Rams coach Jeff Fisher announced that he will start Case Keenum this week at quarterback in favor of Nick Foles (via Ian Rapoport of NFL.com on Twitter). Foles is coming off of a rough performance against the Bears on Sunday, but the news still comes as a surprise.
Against Chicago on Sunday, Foles was 17-of-36 for 200 yards with no touchdowns and one interception. In total, the veteran signal caller posted a passer rating of 53.0. In that rough outing against Chicago, Foles did throw for more than 200 yards, but that was only the second time this season he has eclipsed that mark. With Foles getting roughed up for much of the day, Keenum was brought in to play in the fourth quarter. When asked on Monday morning whether he might make a QB change, Fisher was adamant that he wouldn’t.
“That’s my choice, but no,” Fisher said, according to Nick Wagoner of ESPN.com. “I’m just going to look at it. We have to play better around him. I’ll look and see how he played but he was prepared. He had great practice this week and he missed a couple throws and we had a couple of drops. We’ll look at it but at this point, no.”
The Rams acquired Nick Foles via trade from the Eagles in a swap that saw Sam Bradford go out East. The deal also included a pick swap and a 2016 second-round choice going to St. Louis. While the deal might not have worked out so well for the Rams, they did improve their draft situation. Also, given Bradford’s struggles in Philly, it’s hard to argue that the Rams would have been better off with the former No. 1 overall pick. What can be questioned, however, is the Rams’ decision to give Foles a two-year extension worth more than $24MM.
Foles, a former third-round pick, had his breakout season in 2013, when he threw for 2,891 yards, 27 touchdowns and only two interceptions. A broken collar bone ended his 2014 season, and the 26-year-old (27 in January) finished with 2,163 yards, 13 touchdowns and 10 interceptions in eight games.
In 2013, his breakout campaign, Foles finished with a 7.4 overall grade by Pro Football Focus‘ metrics, good for No. 17 in the league amongst qualified QBs. Last season, in his injury-shortened season, Foles placed No. 25 in the league with a below average -7.4 rating.