On a night when many NFL teams are sending in their third-stringers and simply going through the motions, Rams quarterback Sam Bradford came to play in the preseason finale.
Rams coach Jeff Fisher eschewed the typical NFL protocol of sitting the starting quarterback or getting him out of the game quickly in the final exhibition game, instead leaving Bradford in for most of the first half against the Ravens, long enough to throw 16 passes and complete 11 of them, for 175 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions.
The Ravens were playing backups on defense, so it would be easy to scoff at those stats as simply inflated numbers in a meaningless game. But Bradford has looked good all preseason. His final preseason stats will be 30-for-51 for 398 yards, with five touchdowns and no interceptions.
After an excellent rookie season as the first overall pick in the 2010 NFL draft, Bradford took a step back in 2011. His play this preseason is an indication that he may be ready to take the step forward the Rams need this year.