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  1. #1
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    Exclamation Rams' fourth-round pick already first string at guard



    Posted: Sunday July 31, 2005 3:27PM

    ST. LOUIS (AP) -- In college at New Mexico, offensive guard Claude Terrell wrote a column called Inside the Trenches With Big C for a fan Web site.
    As a rookie with the St. Louis Rams, he's already in the middle of things. In what's likely partly a nod to an impressive start and partly a motivational ploy, coach Mike Martz on Sunday elevated the fourth-round pick to starting left guard ahead of free agent Rex Tucker.
    "He's there for somebody to beat him out," Martz said. "We're not handing anything to anybody."
    Tucker appeared to be the answer to the Rams' problems at what has been an injury-plagued position when he signed with St. Louis in April, only a few days after being released by the Bears. But he has been hurt a lot himself, last playing an entire season in 2001, and Martz doesn't seem inclined to be patient even if it's only four days into training camp.
    "I thought he did a real nice job this morning, but up until today he's been struggling," Martz said. "I think he's trying to learn our system.
    "He has to show something from the very beginning. Absolutely."
    The 6-2, 343-pound Terrell was a four-year starter at New Mexico and helped the team rank 16th in the nation in rushing as a senior. He has quickly caught Martz' eye.
    "He's just such a physical presence inside," Martz said. "His weakness is, as you would imagine, pass protection, but he's getting better at that.
    "He's a tough guy, and he's that violent physical guy inside you've got to have."
    Terrell likes life in the trenches.
    "It's brutal down there, but it's fun," he said. "You get to try to dominate the man in front of you, and that's what it's all about, just being out there competing and being physical."
    Terrell expects he'll melt about 10 pounds off his huge frame by opening day, but he'll be the Rams' largest lineman.
    "You've got to have some bulk in there for pushing against the big guys," Terrell said. "We've got a lot of big interior tackles on the schedule this year so you've got to have some mass down there in the trenches."
    Defensive tackle Ryan Pickett, who weighs about 330 pounds, already has butted heads a bit with the hefty rookie.
    "It's nice going against somebody bigger than me for a change, because I'm bigger than most offensive guards," Pickett said. "He's way bigger than me."
    Martz gave Terrell the news he would be lining up next to perennial Pro Bowl left tackle Orlando Pace on Sunday morning while the team was stretching.
    "It was like, `It's time to go to work,"' Terrell said. "That's an opportunity, that's what I dreamed about, so I'm trying to make the most of the opportunity and stay with the 1s."
    He doesn't appear at all overwhelmed by the complexities of the Rams' playbook or the two-a-day workouts. Unlike previous seasons, the second practice has been at half-speed.
    "It's just football," he said. "I'm trying to adjust to the speed of the game, and it's a little more physical, but the older guys say this training camp is cake compared to what they've been through.
    "So, I'm out there just trying to pull my weight."



  2. #2
    DJRamFan's Avatar
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    Re: Rams' fourth-round pick already first string at guard

    Tucker's injuries will definitely be a problem this year so Terrell will be starting at some point anyway even if he drops back down and here's hoping he doesn't.
    DJRamFan
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  3. #3
    general counsel's Avatar
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    Re: Rams' fourth-round pick already first string at guard

    The more experience he gets now the better. Lord knows timmerman is not the model of physical health at this point and while nutten has the biggest heart (or second biggest if you count jack youngblood) in the history of the franchise, he is held together with bailing wire at this point.

    ramming speed to all

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  4. #4
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    Re: Rams' fourth-round pick already first string at guard

    This is a nice surprise for the O-line !!! Being soooo early in camp I'll take a wait and see approach, but good news just the same. Strong run blocker and working on the pass sets could mean a couple things, they're working on an awful lot of running plays or Jackson's getting some decent yardage from that side.
    We need some of the new aquisitions to really step up this year for a magical season to happen. Hopefully Terrell is the first of 3-4 new Rams that come in to make a real impact for this years team.

    Maineram -
    and out of the ashes rise ...The Breakfast Club !

  5. #5
    RealRam's Avatar
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    Re: Rams' fourth-round pick already first string at guard

    Off topic: Dez, are you going to change the home page back to where it was a couple of days ago or three?

    Everything looks great -- it's just that I think the previous layout worked better, i.e., being able to see the number of views, name of last poster, etc.

    If not, no problem. One can only enjoy the many features of ClanRam.

    Never taken for granted. Many thanks for everything. :bow:

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