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    Bye means a hello to a new Rams start

    By Bill Coats
    ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
    Thursday, Oct. 02 2008
    The locker room at Rams Park emptied quickly Wednesday afternoon, as the
    players headed off on a four-day hiatus. The bye week probably couldn't have
    come at a better juncture for the beaten-down Rams.

    "I think it's a great time for us to kind of get a break, get away from it a
    little bit," guard Richie Incognito said. "It's a lot to take in, what happened
    to Scott (Linehan) on Monday. We have the loss (to Buffalo 31-14 on Sunday),
    the coach getting fired, you have to evaluate game film, you've got the bye
    week.

    "Our heads are in about a million different places. ... There's a lot of
    negativity swirling around, and I think it's good to just kind of clear the air
    and come back with a fresh start under 'Has.' "

    Jim Haslett, the former defensive coordinator who was named to replace Linehan
    as head coach, put the team through a 90-minute practice Wednesday, then
    dismissed the players and coaches until Monday.

    "With everything that happened this week, they probably need a couple of days
    off," Haslett said. "It's an unfortunate situation, but I thought they dealt
    with it in a great manner these last two days. They're going to get some time
    off to reflect on it and hopefully come back here with a little vigor and see
    if we can get this thing right."

    When they return, defensive tackle Adam Carriker explained, it will be with a
    different outlook. "We're just going to come out like we're 0-0 and it's a
    12-game season," he said. "It's like we're restarting the season. Obviously, we
    know we're 0-4, but that's our approach to it."

    Despite their woes, the Rams are just two games out of first place in the NFC
    West. "It's still early in the season," tackle Orlando Pace stressed. "We still
    have a chance to come back and get into the mix of things."

    Talk is one thing; results are another, linebacker Pisa Tinoisamoa noted. The
    Rams' fortunes won't turn without a renewed commitment from the players, he
    said. And a win or two.

    "It's up to us, basically, to go ahead and change it," he said. "Until we do
    that, I'm sure it's going to be a part of us."

    CONDITIONING 101

    Aware that the Rams have been outscored 53-10 in fourth quarters, Haslett had
    the team run sprints after both practices this week. He plans to conduct
    conditioning drills every Monday and Wednesday, starting next week.

    "There's a reason why we haven't played very well in the fourth quarter," he
    said. "I don't know what it is, but I'm not going to let conditioning be part
    of it."

    LOOKER'S SCARE

    The concussion that wide receiver Dane Looker suffered on a big hit Sunday left
    him woozy. The medical report he received the next day left him fearful.

    "They did a CAT scan on my neck just to see if I had any damage, and something
    came up on that image," Looker said. He was told he might have a blockage in
    his carotid artery.

    "They brought up terms like 'aneurysm' and 'stroke,' and that kind of got me
    scared a little bit," Looker said. A subsequent MRI exam showed that the
    original report was a false reading.

    "They called me and said everything's fine," Looker said. "But they had me
    scared for 24 hours."

    RAM-BLINGS

    Pace practiced Wednesday after sitting out Tuesday with a sore shoulder. ...
    Sidelined were Looker, linebacker Will Witherspoon (shoulder) and wide receiver
    Dante Hall (hamstring). ... Wide receiver Derek Stanley, a member of the
    practice squad, took reps with the regulars Tuesday and Wednesday.


  2. #2
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    HUbison is offline Superbowl MVP
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    Re: Bye means a hello to a new Rams start

    Q: How bad is the NFC West?
    A:
    Despite their woes, the Rams are just two games out of first place in the NFC West.
    Wide receiver Derek Stanley, a member of the practice squad, took reps with the regulars Tuesday and Wednesday.
    I could be waaaaaay off on this one, but I do believe by the 2010 season the Rams WR depth chart is Avery, Burton, Stanley..........and I'm feeling pretty good about that.
    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

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