Dishman returns to put offensive line back at full strength
By Bill Coats
Of the Post-Dispatch
Friday, Nov. 05 2004
The Rams' offensive line is back to where it started. Chris Dishman has
recovered from the hyperextended right knee he suffered Sept. 26 against New
Orleans and will be in the lineup at left guard Sunday when the New England
Patriots visit Edward Jones Dome.
That means versatile Scott Tercero, who started the past four games in
Dishman's spot, is back in the bullpen, but perhaps not for long.
Grant Williams, who has started all seven games at right tackle, suffered a
"stinger" two weeks ago in the second half against Miami. He steadily has been
regaining strength in his neck and right shoulder and will start Sunday against
New England, with whom he spent the 2000 and '01 seasons.
But Williams has had some rough moments in recent weeks and figures to be on a
short leash. If Williams falters again, Tercero looms as a tempting option.
"There's always somebody looking over your shoulder," said Williams, who had
started 16 games in eight previous NFL seasons. "Scotty's a great guy to have
to play many positions. He's a luxury for us."
Asked to evaluate his play this year, Williams said, "There's always plays you
want back. I would just say I'd like to do better."
Tercero, a second-year pro, said he was "covering all my bases, ready for
anything. I'm concentrating equally on both (positions), just in case." He's
been hampered for several weeks by a broken left hand that has recovered to the
point where he no longer needs to wear a cast during games.
"With a cast on, it makes it a little more difficult to pass block and to grab
on and engage," Tercero said. "Now that I'm out of it, I'm really happy. It
still hurts, but I can wear a wrist guard and be OK."
McBride's new role
Newly acquired safety Tod McBride appears to have supplanted Justin Lucas as
the dime back. Lucas wasn't impressive while filling that role vs. the Dolphins
after Kwamie Lassiter was released.
McBride, signed as a free agent in the bye week, is "still going to be a ways
away in terms of learning what we do," Martz said. "We're going to start him
off in just certain packages and see how he handles it. And obviously we intend
to use him on special teams, which he's had a real good history of."
Big break for Brake
With Cam Cleeland nursing a sore ankle, fellow tight end Mike Brake has been
promoted to the active roster for Sunday's game. Brake, an undrafted rookie
from Akron, spent the first seven games on the practice squad.
"I've been preparing all year for this," he said. "I got the opportunity to get
a lot more reps in practice, and we'll just have to see how everything goes in
the game. If I get my shot, I'm ready."
When Brake, 24, phoned home to Ohio with the good news, he learned that his
parents wouldn't be hustling to town for his debut. "They had other plans this
weekend," Brake said, chuckling. "That's just how it worked out, one of those
things. But everyone back home is excited, friends and family."
Kennedy will suit up
Defensive tackle Jimmy Kennedy said he "found a new love for this game" during
the three months he spent on the sidelines with a broken foot.
"I'm just glad I have the opportunity to be in the NFL and to play here with
the Rams," said Kennedy, who will suit up Sunday for the first time this
season. "I'm happy every day that I wake up and put a helmet on. I'm in an
elite group, and I just want to go out there and enjoy it."
Kennedy was the Rams' first-round draft choice (No. 12 overall) last year.