By Bill Coats
Wednesday, Jul. 23 2008


When the players assemble Friday afternoon for their first practice, only
tackle Orlando Pace is expected to be limited physically. Pace sustained a
season-ending injury to his left shoulder in last year's season opener and
underwent surgery Sept. 20 to repair his rotator cuff and labrum.

Coach Scott Linehan said Pace, who will be listed on the 80-man camp roster,
will be monitored closely.

"It could be three days, a week or two weeks" until Pace is ready for full
contact, Linehan said. "We'll have to be patient with him. I think he's really
close. If we had to play a game soon, I think he would be probably closer to
being ready."

Pace, a seven-time Pro Bowler, also missed the last six games of the 2006
season after tearing a triceps muscle in his upper right arm.


He may not be relevant, but at least he has an NFL contract.

Seventh-round draft pick David Vobora reached agreement Tuesday with the Rams
on a three-year deal. He was designated "Mr. Irrelevant" because he was the
last selection in the 252-man draft. Vobora, a linebacker from the University
of Idaho, was the guest of honor at "Irrelevant Week" festivities last month in
Newport Beach, Calif., an annual event since 1976.

The 6-foot-1, 236-pound Vobora is the sixth of the Rams' eight draftees to come
to terms. Wide receiver Donnie Avery (second round) and cornerback Justin King
(fourth) remain unsigned one day before players are to report to training camp
at Concordia University in Mequon, Wis.


Former Pittsburgh Steelers fullback Dan Kreider signed a free-agent contract
with the Rams on Tuesday and will join the team in Wisconsin. The 5-11,
255-pound Kreider is a nine-year NFL veteran.

Also, the Rams released tight end-fullback Dedrick Harrington, a former
University of Missouri linebacker; wide receiver Eric Fowler; punter Sean
Douglas; and cornerback Justin McKinney. Offensive lineman Rob Pettiti, who
suffered a torn Achilles' tendon in the offseason, was waived.