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Thread: Rams Turn to Turk
Rams Turn to Turk
Monday, March 27, 2006
By Nick Wagoner
The Rams took the revolving door known as the punter position for another spin over the weekend when they officially agreed to terms with Matt Turk on a one-year deal.
Turk is the latest in an ever-expanding line of punters chosen to solve the teamís continuous punting woes. Turk comes with an accomplished and extensive list of experience, but his status has been uncertain because of recent injury problems.
The 37-year old Turk missed all of last season because of a groin injury. He was most recently with the Dolphins, the place where head coach Scott Linehan spent the 2005 season.
Despite missing all of last season, Turk has a history of success in his 11 seasons in the NFL. Turk went to three straight Pro Bowls with the Redskins from 1996-1998. Turkís career punting average is 42.4 with a net average of 37.2 and 252 punts dropped inside the 20.
Since that strong start to his career, Turkís numbers have dipped some in recent seasons. After posting an average of 42.1 yards per punt with the Dolphins in 2000, Turkís best output was 41.7 in 2004.
The Rams hope that Turkís arrival will finally give them some stability at a position that hasnít had much since 1996. Sean Landeta was let go after season and since that time, the team has not had a punter last more than two complete years.
In the past five seasons alone, the Rams have used six punters. That group includes the likes of Landeta, Reggie Hodges, Mitch Berger, Kevin Stemke, John Baker and, most recently, Bryan Barker.
Barker finished last season as the Ramsí punter after the rookie Hodges struggled mightily in the first five games of the season. Barker finished with a solid average of 42.7 yards per punt, but his net average was just 35.6.
GOING FISHINí: In addition to Turk, the Rams added some depth to the running back position by signing former Green Bay tailback Tony Fisher to a one-year deal.
Fisher will likely be the teamís third running back behind starter Steven Jackson and Marshall Faulk (assuming, as expected, Faulk returns for another season). Fisher comes armed with plenty of experience after spending four seasons with the Packers, where running backs have been prone to injury creating chances for all on the roster.
In his four years Fisher has rushed for 880 yards and four touchdowns, but, more impressive, has been his receiving ability. Fisher has 125 catches for 900 yards and five touchdowns, making him an intriguing option in the passing game, especially on third down.
Although Fisher is a prime candidate to be the No. 3 back, his arrival doesnít necessarily eliminate the possibility of drafting a running back with similar skills, but more explosive ability that can also serve as a return man.
MORE VISITS: The Rams also received visits from Minnesota linebacker Raonall Smith and New Orleans returner Michael Lewis late last week. Neither has signed a contract yet, with the Rams or otherwise, though itís believed the Rams made an offer to Smith. One team known to be pursuing Smith is Green Bay.
Re: Rams Turn to TurkFisher will likely be the teamís third running back behind starter Steven Jackson and Marshall Faulk (assuming, as expected, Faulk returns for another season). Fisher comes armed with plenty of experience after spending four seasons with the Packers, where running backs have been prone to injury creating chances for all on the roster.
I really hope that ol' man Turk stays healthy this year.[SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
Re: Rams Turn to Turk
This isn't disturbing per se, but it is a revelation in a minor way. The Rams FO just isn't going to have two Grade A kickers on the roster. Wilkins is Mr. Money, and Baker had an outstanding season last year. With the way "my" defense has played in the last two years, I would think a young proven punter would be beneficial but I guess it isn't.
Maybe it wasn't all Martz on the lack of attention to special teams after all.
Re: Rams Turn to Turk
I wish the Rams would of kept Mitch berger, he was pretty good while he was here....I still have reservations about Turk!!
steve:clanram:"The breakfast Club"
Re: Rams Turn to Turk
I guess some things never change!!