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  1. #1
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    New Rams debut at minicamp

    By Bill Coats
    ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
    Thursday, May. 11 2006

    * * *
    Rams schedule

    Rookie minicamp
    Saturday, Sunday and Monday

    Full-squad minicamp
    June 9-11

    Training camp
    TBA, opens in late July

    Note: Minicamps are closed to the public
    * * *

    If nothing else over the next few days, Rams coach Scott Linehan wants to cure
    his newest players of what he calls "mental paralysis."

    "You've got to be able to get them to the next page," he said. "We'll spend a
    lot of time teaching them basic information: huddle procedure, play-calling,
    terminology, names of fronts and coverages, those kinds of things. That's
    really important in order to get to a certain level of comfort. ... You want to
    take away that anxiety."

    The event is a minicamp for rookies and selected first-year players, starting
    Saturday and concluding Monday. Participants should report today, and Linehan
    expects 30 to 35 players at Rams Park for the five scheduled workouts, which
    are closed to the public.

    That number includes nine of the team's 10 selections in the recent draft.
    Under NFL rules, linebacker Jon Alston of Stanford won't be permitted to
    participate because his school is on a quarter system, and the senior class
    hasn't graduated yet.

    The team's No. 1 choice, Clemson cornerback Tye Hill, will be here, and he
    realizes he'll be watched closely. "That comes with being a first-round draft
    pick," said Hill, the 15th selection overall.

    Hill said hooking up with his fellow draftees, as well as the undrafted free
    agents, will be a reunion of sorts for him.

    "I know most of them," he said. "I played against (Virginia's) Marques Hagans
    and (Colorado's) Joe Klopfenstein. And I played with (Southern California's)
    Dominique Byrd and the defensive end from Indiana (Victor Adeyanju) at the
    Senior Bowl."

    After spending many hours viewing film of the prospects, as well as conducting
    lengthy interviews and evaluating them at the NFL scouting combine and various
    campus "pro days," Linehan and his staff will get a chance to scrutinize them
    over approximately eight hours on the practice field.

    "I'm eager to look at all of them," Linehan said. "Obviously, looking at our
    new players that we drafted and signed as free agents, but also some younger
    players that we didn't get to evaluate too much at the first minicamp (last
    month). I'm equally excited about both opportunities."

    Linehan said that while he'll keep things relatively simple, he does plan to
    introduce the newcomers to the systems the Rams will use on offense, defense
    and special teams.

    "We want to get the rookies up to speed a little bit," he said. "The first-year
    players will be able to help them kind of get started, how we do things, snap
    counts, alignments, calls, all those things. We want them to learn how we
    practice as a team and then how we do individual things by position, what we
    expect."

    Since the veterans won't attend, direct competition for depth-chart slots won't
    take place. But tight ends Klopfenstein, a second-round pick, and Byrd, a
    third-rounder, are expected to emerge as front-runners for a first-team job
    following the trade of incumbent starter Brandon Manumaleuna to San Diego.

    "Expectations are high because of where we've taken them" in the draft,
    offensive coordinator Greg Olson said. "We'll bring them along and see what
    they can do. It's too early to make an assumption about where they're going to
    be."

    Hill, regarded by Linehan as the "best cover corner" available in the draft,
    will have his first chance to prove worthy of that assessment.

    "I'm excited about getting out there and performing," Hill said. "But I can't
    wait until all this stuff is over, as far as minicamps and training camp. I
    hate camp. I'm ready to get into the season."

    The last of three spring minicamps, this one featuring the full squad, is
    scheduled for June 9-11. Training camp will open in late July. Both will be
    held at Rams Park.


  2. #2
    AvengerRam's Avatar
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    Re: New Rams debut at minicamp

    As Hill's comment indicates, the Rams seemed to place heavy emphasis on the Senior Bowl (including Senior Bowl practices). I think Linehan may have attended, and they certainly had scouts there. Hill, Klopfenstein, Byrd and Adeyanju in particular were considered standouts during the practices and in the game.

    I think that's a pretty good indicator. Players come to the Senior Bowl practices much in the same way they come to the NFL. They've left their comfort zone, have to learn to play with new players and coaches, and must develop and perform quickly. Hopefully, the Rams' draftees' performance in Senior Bowl week will translate to their rookie campaigns.

  3. #3
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    Re: New Rams debut at minicamp

    Quote Originally Posted by RamWraith
    The team's No. 1 choice, Clemson cornerback Tye Hill, will be here, and he
    realizes he'll be watched closely. "That comes with being a first-round draft
    pick," said Hill, the 15th selection overall.
    I hope Hill isnt nervous or anything like that.... im sure he'll be fine and I hope him and all the other draftees do good in the camps

    GO RAMS!!!!

  4. #4
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    Re: New Rams debut at minicamp

    i agree with av on the senior bowl. i think that one of the things senior bowl week demonstrates is coachability and i believe that is an important aspect in evaluating a kids ability to make the transition to the nfl. Talent is important of course, but so is attitude and willingness to learn. Talent alone will almost never be enough at the pro level.

    ramming speed to all

    general counsel


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    Re: New Rams debut at minicamp

    Quote Originally Posted by RamsFan4ever
    I hope Hill isnt nervous or anything like that.... im sure he'll be fine and I hope him and all the other draftees do good in the camps

    GO RAMS!!!!
    I know what you're saying, but hey, if I was drafted I'd definitely be nervous!! But hey, this guy is good, and we all know that, (obviously, he was a first round pick) so I expect great things from him, but I can't say like he might not make a mistake or anything


    Always and Forever a fan of the St. Louis Rams

  6. #6
    RamsFanSam's Avatar
    RamsFanSam is offline Pro Bowl Ram
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    Re: New Rams debut at minicamp

    The pre-draftees that forego the Senior Bowl because of injury fears and rely solely on the combine scores are giving up a big chance to show their stuff. I have to agree that the Senior Bowl shows more about a draftee's abilities and adaptability than running a 40.

    I wish Alston was able to attend the mini-camp. Missing this will cause him to miss a great opportunity to lose those new-to-the-NFL nerves.

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