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  1. #1
    RamWraith's Avatar
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    Fitzpatrick realizes there'll be no free pass

    He's battling Dave Ragone to be No. 3 quarterback

    BY STEVE KORTE
    News-Democrat

    ST. LOUIS - Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick faces a make-or-break preseason with the St. Louis Rams.

    Fitzpatrick is fighting Dave Ragone for the job of third-string quarterback. The loser likely will be looking for work elsewhere in the NFL.

    "I've got to come out and perform in the preseason, as do a lot of the young guys," Fitzpatrick said. "We're looking forward to getting out there. We have a great opportunity in front of us. We're going to get a lot of reps."

    Rams coach Scott Linehan said the battle between Fitzpatrick and Ragone will be decided during the team's four preseason games.

    The Rams play their preseason opener against the Indianapolis Colts at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Edward Jones Dome.

    "That's going to continue to be a really interesting competition," Linehan said. "I think in the preseason games both of them will get a lot of snaps. I think they'll tend to either stay together or one will separate himself as we get into the games."

    Fitzpatrick completed 7 of 11 passes for 137 yards and one touchdown in Saturday's intrasquad scrimmage. Ragone completed 7 of 15 passes for 115 yards and one touchdown.

    "Both are very hard workers and very, very intelligent kids," Linehan said. "They've got a great relationship together, and we'll just continue to evaluate them and chart them.

    "The bottom line is the production at the end of the day -- the plusses and minuses. It's an ongoing battle, and I was happy that both had a couple things go well (Saturday). I think Ryan worked primarily with the second group, but I think you have to mix it up so both of them are working with both groups. I'm very happy with both players."

    Fitzpatrick was the feel-good story of the NFL for a brief time last season after the Harvard graduate engineered an improbable comeback win over the Houston Texans on Nov. 27.

    Trailing 24-3 in the third quarter, Fitzpatrick helped the Rams storm back by completing 19 of 30 attempts for 310 yards and three touchdowns.

    Fitzpatrick would start the next three games, but couldn't recapture the magic he had against the Texans.

    He threw for 163 yards with one interception in a 24-9 loss to the Washington Redskins and had five interceptions in a 27-13 loss to the Minnesota Vikings. He then completed only 10 of 24 passes for 69 yards against the Philadelphia Eagles, before being replaced in the second half by Jamie Martin.

    Fitzpatrick didn't seem to have as much zip on his passes late in the season. He blames the problem on both bad mechanics and trying to be too much like starting quarterback Marc Bulger.

    "I think I kind of got away from the way I've thrown my whole life," Fitzpatrick said. "Marc throws the ball a certain way, and he's so effective at it that at times you say, 'Hey, if I start throwing the way he throws, maybe I'll do the same thing.'

    "We're different styles of quarterbacks, and it hurt me last year that I was trying to throw too much like Marc. He has that real quick release, and I have a longer release than he does."

    Fitzpatrick is brimming with confidence heading into his second NFL preseason.

    "It's a been-here-before type of thing," Fitzpatrick said. "Last year, coming straight from Harvard was a big chance. It took me a year to get my feet wet and settle down."

    Fitzpatrick said backup quarterback Gus Frerotte, who is familiar with Linehan's offensive system, has made learning a new offense a lot easier.

    "Gus has helped me a lot since he has gotten here," Fitzpatrick said. "We have similar type of styles as far as how we throw the ball. He's had a lot of little pointers or tidbits for me as far as things with my feet, my shoulder and my posture."


  2. #2
    Varg6's Avatar
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    Re: Fitzpatrick realizes there'll be no free pass

    I still have faith in Fitzpatrick, I think Ragone is a goner...


    Always and Forever a fan of the St. Louis Rams

  3. #3
    RamsFan4ever's Avatar
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    Re: Fitzpatrick realizes there'll be no free pass

    Dont worry about Fitz. He do a lot of things in the preseason with all those snaps hes going to get as a #3 QB.

  4. #4
    txramsfan's Avatar
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    Re: Fitzpatrick realizes there'll be no free pass

    I tend to be in the Ragone camp. Fitz had one good half against the Houston, but there is a reason why the Texans received the first pick in the draft.....they were terrible. Against much better competition, Fitzpatrick struggled.

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