Rams Want Close Look At New OLB's
Rams want close look at new OLBs
By BILL COATS
Wednesday, August 24, 2011
Free-agent signees Ben Leber and Brady Poppinga are expected to start at outside linebacker for the St. Louis Rams on Friday night in Kansas City. Leber will be on the weakside, Poppinga on the strongside.
Bryan Kehl and Na'il Diggs had been getting most of the first-team work, but coach Steve Spagnuolo and his staff want to get a good look at all the OLB candidates working with MLB James Laurinaitis.
"We wanted James to get that feel and also give those guys a chance to see what it feels like," Spagnuolo said. "There's no final decisions made in any way. But we thought to keep the competition even and open that we should go about it that way in this particular game."
Four players have been ruled out for the Chiefs game because of injuries: DTs Jermelle Cudjo (back) andFred Robbins (back), TE Michael Hoomanawanui (calf) and S Mikail Baker(knee).
WR Danario Alexander got limited work Wednesday at practice, which because of the extreme heat was moved to the indoor facility at Rams Park. Spagnuolo said the Rams were being careful with Alexander's troublesome left knee.
"We're inside, on the turf," he noted. "I'm sure (wide receivers coach) Nolan (Cromwell) was cognizant of that, and it was probably the smart thing to do."
Re: Rams Want Close Look At New OLB's
I'd like to see Spags's signature defense with James Hall at the DT slot and Quinn at RE. This should show how far we've progressed now that Justin Bannan will be starting at Robbins's slot. Glad to see Poppinga and Leber at starting position, our run defense was a disaster last game and despite this being a preseason game, I do not want Bartell chasing Charles in a footrace again.