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  1. #1
    RamWraith's Avatar
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    McCollum adjusts to life without 'Doughnut Brother'

    By Bill Coats

    From the very genesis of their tenure with the Rams, Andy McCollum and Adam Timmerman were overshadowed.
    On Feb. 15, 1999, a day after Timmerman was signed as a free agent, the Rams picked up St. Louisan Trent Green and pronounced him their starting quarterback. Exactly two months later -- and just 48 hours after McCollum agreed to a free-agent deal -- the Rams made another splash by trading for Colts running back Marshall Faulk.

    "Offensive linemen," McCollum said with a smile. "None of us are the stars of the team."

    Maybe not, but McCollum and Timmerman still played key roles in the sudden offensive surge that helped the Rams earn two Super Bowl berths and one championship.

    For seven seasons, they lined up together, Timmerman at right guard and McCollum at either left guard or center. Off the field, the fun-loving "Doughnut Brothers" enjoyed a tight bond: It was rare to see one without the other at Rams Park; they were roommates on the road, and their families often vacationed together.

    They even mirrored each other in size, both listed at 6 feet 4 and 300 pounds.

    They came in together, and they wanted to go out together. "That would be the ideal thing, to spend the last season playing side by side," Timmerman said.

    That ambition began to unravel in the second quarter of opener last year vs. Denver, when McCollum, who hadnít missed a game with the Rams, suffered a season-ending knee injury.

    In Week 10, Timmerman broke three ribs at Carolina. He took one snap off to catch his breath, then re-entered the game. He mustered through the next three weeks, but his consecutive-games streak of 184 came to an end when coach Scott Linehan inactivated him Dec. 17 at Oakland.

    Timmerman, 35, was released in February. He hasnít caught on with another team yet.

    Meanwhile, McCollum, 36, not only is attempting to come back from a major injury and for the first time in several years is facing a serious challenge to his job, heís also having to adjust to NFL life without Timmerman at his side.

    "Going out on the field without Adam is strange," McCollum said. "Weíve been playing together for a long time."

    Even stranger, he said, is not having Timmerman keeping the atmosphere loose in meetings and attacking the chow line with him.

    "We donít have his bad jokes going in the meetings all the time now. I definitely miss that," McCollum said. "And his eating ability . . . no one really can eat food like Adam could. Heís hard to replace as an eating partner; no one wants to eat with the old man."

    But the oddest experience was seeing rookie center Dustin Fry wearing a jersey with 62 -Ė Timmermanís old number -Ė on it during organized team activities. "They put him in 62ís locker, too. That was really weird," McCollum noted.

    Still, friendship is one thing, and career is another. McCollum realizes that he has little time to weep for his pal if he intends to be the Ramsí first-team center. Brett Romberg, who filled in admirably late in the season after Richie Incognito shifted to right guard, also is gunning for that spot. "I think itís going to be a great battle," Linehan said.

    "They say you donít lose your job to injury, but that only applies to people with the name of Marshall, Isaac or something like that. We all know that," McCollum said. "Brett plans on winning it, and I plan on winning it and getting my job back. So, how it works out, itíll work out. Weíll just do our best."

    McCollum, who reported that his knee "feels 100 percent out there," said his time on the sideline gave him a renewed appreciation for his vocation.

    "Itís highly motivational, I believe, when you take a year off involuntarily," he said. "I wasnít happy about sitting out last year, and it motivates you to come back and train that much harder, get back on the field and try to have some fun out there."

    Even with someone else wearing No. 62. "I wish it couldíve worked out differently," McCollum said. "But thatís the way the business goes."

  2. #2
    laram0's Avatar
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    Re: McCollum adjusts to life without 'Doughnut Brother'

    Surprised to read that Timmerman hasn't landed a job yet.

  3. #3
    jjigga3000's Avatar
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    Re: McCollum adjusts to life without 'Doughnut Brother'

    It might be a possibility they bring him back for VM

  4. #4
    RealRam's Avatar
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    Re: McCollum adjusts to life without 'Doughnut Brother'

    All this competition brews quality for the players that finally make the team as starters. I would like to see Andy remain as solid depth at C or G for what seems to be a renewed and improved OL this season.

    I can see where he misses his buddy Adam and I'm sure AT feels the same about AM. :\
    But they're both consumate professionals and can carry that mental load as well -- just as they can manage to eat donuts by themselves.

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