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St. Louis Rams
Title track: 48
Fan relations: 114
Stadium experience: 120
Bang for the buck: 69
Change from last year: -20
Yet another losing season? Check. Another (sigh, yes, another) QB under center? Check. An NFL-worst yards per game average? Yep, that, too. It wasn't a great season for the Rams, and a 20-place fall in these standings isn't unexpected. But the silver lining: Checking in at No. 48 on the title track offers a sign that some fans believe the Rams are headed in the right direction in the one place it matters most: on the field.
The Rams rank just 86th in player, but the team has a lot of young talent, including burgeoning stars on the defensive line such as DE Robert Quinn and DT Aaron Donald. And though they're one of the youngest teams in the NFL, they can mix in some strong experience (Kenny Britt, Jared Cook, James Laurinaitis, Chris Long) to keep the keel even. St. Louis hasn't had a winning season since 2003 (though that history does keep their title track score at 48, their best showing), but there's a belief from general manager Les Snead and coach Jeff Fisher that enough pieces are in place for a change in 2015, and mediocrity is no longer acceptable.
St. Louis ranks 119th in ownership and 120th in stadium experience, and a strong case can be made that the two are related. Owner Stan Kroenke and the Rams converted their lease on the Edward Jones Dome to year-to-year. It's no secret Kroenke has his sights set on building a new palace for his Rams in Los Angeles (Inglewood, to be exact), even as St. Louis is working hard to get a new stadium proposal in place in an effort to keep the Rams in town. Kroenke, meanwhile, hasn't won over fans with his silence. He hasn't talked to St. Louis media since Fisher's introductory news conference in 2012. But it was the lack of a top-tier stadium that got Kroenke to look elsewhere in the first place, and it's because he's looking elsewhere that he's viewed as a villain by fans in St. Louis.
That the Rams dropped 20 places from last year should come as no surprise as they fell off at least a little in every category other than affordability and bang for the buck. The on-field product didn't improve; the record actually took a one-game hit (from 7-9 in 2013 to 6-10 in 2014) despite a third year under coach Jeff Fisher -- and Fisher's coaching ranking dropped 28 spots after another mediocre season. With so much uncertainty surrounding the franchise's future in St. Louis, fans will be skeptical about the Rams until the bitter end.