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Rams Notebook: Ice cream bars ease Little's throat pain
By Bill Coats
ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
As eager as he is for the searing pain in his throat to subside, Rams defensive end Leonard Little acknowledged that he'll miss one feature of his new soft-food diet.
"Dove ice cream bars, the kind with almonds on them. Best in the world," he said, his voice low and raspy.
Little wound up at Barnes-Jewish Hospital after being struck on the front of his neck in the first half Monday night while playing against Chicago.
"I was making a tackle, and one of their linemen just hit me in the throat," Little said. "I tried to keep playing, but as the game went on, it got worse and worse. . . real inflamed."
At the hospital, "They ran a camera down my throat to check out the area, and they did a CT scan," Little said. "They looked over all the stuff and said I was OK to go home. I left at about 4 o'clock in the morning."
Although no structural damage was found, Little is nursing a major-league sore throat.
"It hurts like crazy," he said. "I've had strep throat, and it's a lot worse than that."
The discomfort hasn't kept Little off the practice field this week, as the Rams prepare for Sunday's game at Oakland.
"He was like he always is, full speed and go," coach Scott Linehan said.
Little is sticking with easy-to-swallow food but trying not to overdo it with the Dove bars.
"I'm still trying to keep my figure," he said.
Changing of the guard?
Linehan confirmed that he's considering moving Richie Incognito to right guard and starting Brett Romberg at center.
"I really believe Richie's natural position is guard," Linehan said. "Romberg had his audition in the game against San Francisco (Nov. 26, when Incognito went out with a sprained foot), and he played real well. Those two scenarios right there make me think it's doable."
Incognito, who has started the last 12 games at center, would replace Adam Timmerman. He's been playing since Nov. 19 with three broken ribs.
"The guy's as tough as there is; he's been giving it his all," Linehan said. "But it's affected his ability to play, and I'm not sure it's helping him or helping the team at this point. So we're contemplating possibly not even having him play this game."
If so, Timmerman's string of consecutive regular-season games would end at 184. Among active offensive linemen, only Kansas City guard Will Shields (220) has a longer streak.
"It's special, and I understand that," Linehan said. "But I've also got to do what I think is best for the team."
Timmerman got in limited work at practice Thursday, as did safety Jerome Carter (ankle). Both were listed as "questionable" on the injury report. Fullback Paul Smith (neck) didn't practice and was "doubtful."
The newest Ram is Ron Alexis, a 6-foot, 213-pound running back who was signed off Jacksonville's practice squad. Alexis fills the roster spot created when linebacker Pisa Tinoisamoa was placed on injured reserve. Alexis, who also has special-teams experience, played in just one game with the Jaguars this year, rushing for five yards in three carries. Jacksonville signed him in 2004 as an undrafted rookie from Washington.
"It's a great feeling just to have another team believe in me," said Alexis, 25. "I'm a whatever guy — whatever they want me to do."
If running back Marshall Faulk, who is sitting out this season with a knee injury, is serious about coming back in 2007, at least one offensive coordinator would be more than interested in his services.
"Shoot, I'd ride a bicycle to pick him up," the Lions' Mike Martz, the Rams' head coach from 2000-2005, told reporters in Detroit. "Are you kidding? I'd welcome that. Absolutely. Wouldn't that be fun, seeing 28 running down the field?" ... Steven Jackson is six catches short of breaking Faulk's team record for receptions by a running back (87), set in 1999.
Re: Rams Notebook: Ice cream bars ease Little's throat painBRUUUUUUUUCE
Re: Rams Notebook: Ice cream bars ease Little's throat pain
No, No, No, Marshall stays here.