The war of words between Rams running back Steven Jackson and coach Jim Haslett gradually is escalating.
Recently, Haslett suggested that Jackson’s leg injury, which caused him to miss five games and limited him to one carry in another, occurred as a result of his training-camp holdout for a new contract. 
Jackson disagreed.
After Jackson’s full-time return to the field on Sunday, Haslett said that Jackson was “gassed and his leg was starting to bother him.”
Jackson disagreed again.
“No, I wasn’t gassed,” Jackson said.  “It wasn’t my conditioning.  I wish he’d stop saying that.”
But maybe Jackson should stop and think about whether Haslett is trying to do him a favor.  Because if Jackson’s overall ineffectiveness this season isn’t the result of a holdout-induced injury and his lack of conditioning after missing several weeks of practice and games, then the perceived dip in Jackson’s play could make him the latest in a long line of tailbacks who seemingly go soft once they get paid big money.
So maybe that’s what Haslett should say.  Maybe he should say Jackson might have lost a little bit of his heart once he filled his bank account, just like Shaun Alexander and Larry Johnson.
For the season, Jackson has 619 yards rushing in seven games plus that one-carry cameo against the Cardinals.  He has topped the 100-yard mark twice.
On Sunday, he finished with 94 yards on 21 carries.


  1. I thought that he would get 100 yards easily. He was shredding up the Fins in the first half. I don’t think he’s got the Shaun Alexander Syndrome. The guy still runs hard between the tackles.
    As for Larry Johnson, they guy had like 900 carries over 2 seasons, I think he was just over-used, got worn down and aged quickly.

  2. That argument does lose some steam when you consider what Jackson has done in those games in which he has played. Despite being the only legit offensive weapon on a very poor team that is consistently behind, he has gained a good number of ground yardage in all those games. But his rushing yardage is only half the story as he had been leading the team in reception yardage as well.
    Truth be told, Jackson got injured, which happens to every athlete at some point (Unless your name is Ripken). But when you are on a crappy team destined to make a large number of house-cleaning moves this offseason, the finger pointing will continue to increase until those changes happen.

  3. First of all, Jackson had seven carries against AZ, not one. Second, aside from that game and the first game of the season, he has at least 90 yards from scrimmage in every game he’s played. Yesterday he averaged roughly 4.5 yards per carry. And by the way, he plays for a TERRIBLE team. What the hell more do you want from him?

  4. Once again, Florio misses the mark. Have you even watched Jackson this year? He’s a beast and has shown no affects of a new contract. If you want to say he was banged up from missing camp, fine. To say he’s going soft because of the money is completely untrue. Watch a damn game, Mike.

  5. I’m sorry but Cal Ripken was not ‘an athlete’ but otherwise TheBoz… is right.
    I’d like to know how many runs per game the Rams commit to this season versus last and how many touches Jackson has had at this point compared to the same week last year. But RobJH is right: the man runs hard – although I can’t say I fear Stephen Jackson I still respect the guy without a doubt.
    …and I never respected Shaun Alexander for the record.

  6. yeah thats weak, jackson was a beast against the Phins, ran hard and they couldn’t stop him. Why they stopped feeding him in the 2nd half should be the question. Maybe Haslett trying to take the focus off himself…

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