Monday, August 4, 2008

Nick’s Notes: August 4, 2008

MEQUON, Wis. –

Notes from Monday afternoon

- For the first time since arrival here at Concordia, the Rams were forced indoors because of weather. The team practiced in the gymnasium (bring your green hat!) in what amounts to a glorified walk through.

- Scott Linehan said the team got a lot of work done even under the conditions though obviously the contact was limited so as to keep the players on their feet.

- Because of the nature of the practice, there wasn’t much to report though it appears the players who started returning to practice in the morning would have been available in more extensive roles had the workout been outdoors.

- The schedule for tomorrow includes a practice at 9:40 AM that will run for about two hours. The team will then eat lunch here before departing for the airport around 3 for a flight to Nashville. The Rams and Titans will practice twice on Wednesday, again on Thursday and the Rams will have a walk through on Friday leading into Saturday night’s preseason opener.

- That’s all for today. I’ll be back in the morning with some notes from the practice before heading out to Tennessee.

Notes from Monday's Morning practice

- The Rams got back to work Monday morning with a high tempo practice with plenty of intensity.

- In fact, the first fight of camp broke out early in the workout as defensive end Leonard Little became heated with tight end Richard Owens. Little felt that Owens was taking some liberties with his blocking style when asked to help and Little shoved Owens into the ground. The brief skirmish was broken up quickly but Little made it clear he was none too pleased with his counterpart.

- The Rams are starting to get back to health in time for this week’s practice sessions with the Tennessee Titans. Marques Hagans, Dan Kreider, Justin King and Chris Draft worked back into the mix in varying capacities. Oshiomogho Atogwe and Mark Setterstrom were also back in uniform but didn’t do much of anything in the practice.

- Left tackle Orlando Pace worked in more team drills than at any point during the camp and continues to knock the rust off. He’ll be full go sooner than later though the team wants to take its time with him.

- Brian Leonard regularly looks like the best back on the field. He is running hard and is not afraid of collisions. Clearly, this team needs Steven Jackson for success but Leonard could play an integral role this season one way or the other.

- Brock Berlin clearly got the memo that the competition for the third quarterback job is on and poppin’. Berlin had the best practice I’ve ever seen from him in the morning. He threw a gorgeous deep ball for a touchdown to Shaine Smith and had pinpoint deliveries all over the field. That battle with Bruce Gradkowski for the third spot is only going to get more interesting as the preseason slate opens up.

- Marc Bulger continues to show his receiving skills, catching a throwback from Dante Hall a few days after grabbing one from fullback Russ Weil.

- The only four players who actually missed the workout in its entirety were Jackson, receiver Donnie Avery, cornerback Fakhir Brown, tight end Anthony Becht and defensive end Victor Adeyanju.

- Speaking of Brown, I’m told he’s drawing closer to a return though there’s no timetable. He’s been doing some light weight work on his injured shoulder.

- The light is coming on for Chris Long. Long is thinking less and reacting more. The easiest way to know how he’s coming along? Defensive line coach Brian Baker isn’t yelling at him as much.

- The Rams might carry eight defensive linemen after all and if that’s the case, the battle will be between ends Eric Moore and C.J. Ah You.

- That’s all for the morning session. Be back with more after the afternoon workout.