Rams Notes: Losing leaves Linehan 'humbled'
By Bill Coats
ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
Tuesday, Oct. 09 2007
A day after a 34-31 loss to Arizona dropped the Rams to 0-5, coach Scott
Linehan was asked the almost inevitable question: Is he concerned about his job
His answer was delivered without anger or remorse.
"I don't worry about things like that," Linehan said during his weekly news
conference. "I control what I control, which is doing the best I can do. If
that's not good enough, then so be it."
Linehan bristled a bit, though, when asked next if he was embarrassed by his
"Embarrassed? I think it's very humbling and humiliating to lose," he said. "I
don't think I've ever dodged the fact that we've underachieved our goals to
this point. I've never used any excuse whatsoever for falling short of winning
"But being embarrassed? I'd be embarrassed if I told you that we weren't doing
everything we could possibly do. So, no, embarrassed isn't the word I would
use. I'd say humbled and very, very disappointed."
The newest area of concern because of injuries is safety. Corey Chavous
(pectoral) didn't play Sunday, and his replacement, Jerome Carter, went down in
the second quarter with a broken foot. Then Todd Johnson, who came in for
Carter, left with a sprained neck late in the third.
That forced cornerback Ron Bartell, who hadn't taken a snap at safety since
midseason last year, to fill in. Although Johnson might be available this week,
Carter probably is headed for injured reserve.
So, the Rams again have the "help wanted" sign out.
Bartell could remain at safety, especially if Tye Hill (back) returns this week.
"We're real optimistic about Tye coming back," Linehan said. "If Tye's good to
go, Ron will then probably be having three roles: corner, safety possibly, and
then obviously the nickel."
The secondary got a boost with the return of cornerback Fakhir Brown vs. the
Cardinals. Brown, who had served a four-game suspension for violating the NFL's
substance-abuse policy, had two interceptions and a pass breakup in the end
zone, in addition to eight tackles.
Guard Richie Incognito, playing for the first time since suffering a high-ankle
sprain in mid-August, cost the Rams half a football field worth of penalties
Sunday. He was called twice for 15-yard personal fouls and twice for holding, a
Incognito was remorseful afterward, but Linehan hardly was mollified.
"If you don't comply with the rules, then your ability to stay on the field is
in jeopardy," Linehan said. "If we continue to do that, then someone else,
regardless of our injury situation, has got to go in. ... That's the thing that
I've always said to Richie: The only thing that can hold him back from being as
good as he wants to be is himself."
Linehan also noted that a player who gains notoriety with the officials is
watched more closely.
"Once you start that, you're going to be a target," he said.
The league has reinstated defensive tackle Claude Wroten after he served his
four-game league suspension, and he'll be tossed back into the rotation on the
"He'll be in there, more likely in passing situations," defensive coordinator
Jim Haslett said. "But he'll be in there in the mix in the other downs, too."
Defensive tackle Louis Leonard, released by the Rams on Saturday, has been
claimed by Cleveland. ... After Sunday's games, Donnie Jones' 50.6-yard punt
average was No. 1 in the NFL. His net of 41.9 yards ranked third.