Fair appears OK after scare
By Jim Thomas
Of the Post-Dispatch

DETROIT - Terry Fair went down quick and hard, and then didn't move. The veteran cornerback's head snapped back while he was tackling Detroit running back Kevin Jones late in the first quarter of Monday's exhibition game at Ford Field.

Rams coach Mike Martz came out almost immediately to check on Fair. While a group of medical officials from both teams tended to Fair, several Rams players knelt on the sidelines, in prayer or reflection. After a delay of nearly 10 minutes, Fair was placed on a stretcher and driven off the field.

Initial indications were that the injury isn't as serious as feared. Fair was diagnosed with a strained neck. He never lost consciousness, and always had feeling in his extremities, according to a Rams spokesman. Fair was taken to Ford Hospital in Detroit for precautionary evaluation.

Because of injury problems, primarily an ankle injury, Fair has played in only three games since the 2001 season. Fair, who played his first four seasons in Detroit, is trying to make the Rams' roster as a reserve cornerback and kick returner.

He played his first four NFL seasons with the Lions, and before the game was looking forward to a return trip to Detroit, where his father and most of his relatives live.

"It's always fun going back to Detroit, the place where it all began," Fair, 29, said late last week. "The fans were great while I was there. I had a lot of fun there - a lot of friends and friendships that I made with guys on the team."

Fair was in the game so early - on the Rams' third defensive series - only because starter DeJuan Groce has been ill with flu-like symptoms