Players get good vibes from fans at workout ...
Sports Rams Story
By Bill Coats
ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
MEQUON, Wis. — There was Rams gear and Packers paraphernalia, and coach Scott Linehan said he even spotted "a Trent Green No. 10 Kansas City jersey out there. We've got them all."
Some 2,000 spectators jammed into Century Stadium on the Concordia University campus Saturday for the only scheduled intrasquad scrimmage of Rams training camp. They filled the stands and lined up along the fence that surrounds the field.
"They love their football up here," quarterback Marc Bulger said. "There wasn't a lot of clapping, but I think they just enjoy watching football."
The scrimmage last year at Rams Park drew about 500 fewer viewers.
"I'm really impressed. I want to say thanks to the people of Mequon for coming out and supporting us," wide receiver Torry Holt said.
The club has just a one-year agreement to hold camp in Mequon, but Linehan is giving out strong vibes about returning in 2009.
"This has been a great experience," he said. "I can honestly say they've been very open to us being here, very cordial, cheered us on. I know we're in Packers country, but we've had a number of Rams fans that have shown up. They've told me where they're from, they've planned their summer trips (around camp), and that's what I was hoping for when we decided to move up here.
"Hopefully they'll go back and tell everybody else, and maybe we'll finish this camp off with some more Rams fans up here."
PLAYERS GET A BREAK
The scrimmage marked the 13th workout since camp kicked off July 24, and the players finally are getting their first break. They're off until 6:15 p.m. Sunday, when meetings resume. The next practice is Monday morning.
"Some have family here, some are maybe going to get on the lake (Michigan)," Linehan said. "I told them they're grown men, it's their business. No curfew tonight."
Most of the players, especially the veterans, probably will use the time off to catch their breath and rest their bodies.
The Rams will fly to Nashville, Tenn., after practice Tuesday morning. They'll work out with the Titans on Wednesday and Thursday prior to the clubs' preseason game Saturday night.
"I think next week is going to be a very, very critical week for us," wide receiver Torry Holt said. "Once we get off the plane, we've got to go into a business mode, an evaluation mode for everybody, from No. 1 down to No. 80 (on the roster). That's just the approach we have to take.
"If we go to Tennessee and we practice well ... I think that'll give this team a big boost."
After their trip, the Rams will return to Mequon for four more days of workouts before breaking camp and heading back to St. Louis.
With the first nine days in the books and the start of the four-game preseason schedule looming, one might think that the worst part of the camp grind is history.
Think again, Holt shot back.
"I don't know where you got that from," he said, laughing. "To me, it's drudgery all the way through camp. Camp is camp. We won't be over that drudgery until we move on into the regular season."
And that's still a month away.
STEVEN JACKSON WATCH
Days out: 9
Practices missed: 13
Fine total: $135,000
Linebacker Marcus Riley, an undrafted rookie from Fresno State, has taken the roster spot held by Vince Hall, who was waived because of a hamstring injury. ... Wide receiver Marques Hagans (hamstring) returned to the injury list and sat out the scrimmage.
Re: Players get good vibes from fans at workout ...
Kind of amazing they get 500 more fans coming to camp up there in Packers country than last year in St. Louis. And following a miserable 3-13 season to boot. I can understand why some question how dedicated the fans really are down in St. Louis, especially with those home games that were more like away games we've also seen at the dome...