Training Camp Site: Rams Park
Location: St. Louis, Mo.
Rookies Report: July 26
Veterans Report: July 26
Record: 6-10 (2nd in NFC West)
Total Offense: 348.2 (9th)
Rushing: 95.9 (22nd)
Passing: 252.2 (4th)
Total Defense: 350.1 (30th)
Rushing: 136.1 (28th)
Passing: 214.0 (23rd)
It's a fresh new start. Scott Linehan comes in to balance out a team that has always been great on offense and lacking on defense. The Rams had an amazing 10 draft picks this year, and half of them were spent on the defensive side of the ball. The first selection was cornerback Tye Hill, a very athletic corner who will get a good shot to start from Day 1. But free-agent acquisition Fakhir Brown will have something to say about that. Maybe both of those guys will be lining up next to free-agent safety Corey Chavous, instantly adding respect to the secondary. And that will be huge after Adam Archuleta left for Washington.
Most of the offseason pickups were to add depth at several positions, as many starters return. The offensive line is extremely talented with Alex Barron, Adam Timmerman, Andy McCollum, Claude Terrell and Orlando Pace from side to side. No one can dispute the big-play capabilities of both Isaac Bruce and Torry Holt at wide receiver, and if Marc Bulger can successfully come back from his injuries, then there will be no lack of offensive firepower. That goes the same for running back Steven Jackson.
There are question marks throughout the defense, but the biggest ones are in the secondary followed closely by the line. One of the biggest defensive pickups was tackle La'Roi Glover. There was a serious lack of experience at that position before his signing. If everyone played up to their potential, then linebacker would be the strongest spot. Pisa Tinoisamoa is a lock on the outside, and now the team has Will Witherspoon coming in from free agency. He was needed after last year's pickups of Chris Claiborne and Dexter Coakley combined for just 76 tackles and 2½ sacks. The Rams may still be behind defensively, but they're catching up. They'll possibly have to fight off the Cardinals for second place in the NFC West, as both teams will most likely be looking up at Seattle.
What's up with the defense?
There's still a lot of work to be done. But the signings of safety Corey Chavous and tackle La'Roi Glover sealed up two starting spots. Glover was a huge pickup because three DTs jumped ship for other teams in the offseason. Chavous is a former Pro Bowler who can bring a nastiness to the secondary that was left behind when Adam Archuleta departed for Washington. Rookie Tye Hill and free-agent signee Fakhir Brown might have the CB jobs lined up, but there's little-to-no depth behind them despite DeJuan Groce and Ronald Bartell trying their best at times. And behind Chavous there is virtually no safety depth. The Rams are in trouble because any injuries or inconsistent play by the starters could expose more holes for the opposition to take advantage of.
How is Marc Bulger recovering from his shoulder injury?
There has been little reported on Bulger's shoulder injury from late last season, but no news seems to be good news. Ryan Fitzpatrick and Jamie Martin closed out the 2005 campaign, and the Rams recently acquired Dave Ragone from Houston in exchange for a draft pick. So as long as Bulger's arm is 100 percent, that means the Rams have their starter back and three guys behind him who could be a legitimate No. 2. The team will most likely not keep four QBs on the roster, so there could be some heated competition at that spot in training camp.
What does Scott Linehan bring as head coach?
Linehan always liked to have an aggressive approach when he was an offensive coordinator, and he steps onto a team that was built for domination. It will still be an offensive showcase in St. Louis, but all the terminology has changed. The offense has many veterans that now must adjust to new ways of thinking and communicating. And since a good portion of minicamp was devoted to going over the "bare bones" aspect of things, the time spent on actually running the more complex plays was limited. If this offense can take to the playbook early enough, the offense won't skip a beat and would have the potential to score 30 points in every game.
VETERAN COMINGS AND GOINGS
Roster Additions Players Lost
Fakhir Brown, CB
Corey Chavous, S
Tony Fisher, RB
Jason Fisk, DT
Gus Frerotte, QB
La'Roi Glover, DT
Remy Hamilton, K
Paul Smith, RB
Raonall Smith, LB
Todd Steussie, OT
Kevin Timothee, CB
Matt Turk, P
Will Witherspoon, LB Adam Archuleta, S
Corey Ivy, DB
Tyoka Jackson, DT
Chris Johnson, CB
Damione Lewis, DT
Jamie Martin, QB
Ryan Pickett, DT
Rd Sel# Player Pos. Ht. Wt. School
1 15 Hill, Tye CB 5-9 186 Clemson
2 46 Klopfenstein, Joe TE 6-6 256 Colorado
3 68 Wroten, Claude DT 6-2 303 Louisiana State
3 77 Alston, Jon OLB 6-1 224 Stanford
3 93 Byrd, Dominique TE 6-2 256 Southern California
4 113 Adeyanju, Victor DE 6-4 275 Indiana
5 144 Hagans, Marques WR 5-9 201 Virginia
7 221 McGarigle, Tim ILB 6-0 241 Northwestern
7 242 Setterstrom, Mark G 6-4 315 Minnesota
7 243 Palmer, Tony G 6-2 330 Missouri
Date Opponent Time
Aug. 10 Indianapolis 8:00 p.m. (FOX)
Aug. 19 Houston 8:00 p.m.
Aug. 26 at Kansas City 8:30 p.m.
Aug. 31 at Miami 7:30 p.m.
Re: Preseason Primer.
hmm is this guy forgetting butler and fisher? they may not be great starters but they are solid backups and at least decent. Oh yeah, what about cogs?