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  1. #1
    RamWraith's Avatar
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    Receiver has speed but little experienc

    By Bill Coats
    Of the Post-Dispatch
    05/06/2005
    Rams Carter

    Oddly, the oldest participant at last week's rookie minicamp, Jeremy Carter, also arrived at Rams Park with the least football experience.
    Oddly, the oldest participant at last week's rookie minicamp also arrived at Rams Park with the least football experience.

    Wide receiver Jeremy Carter, 25, played only one season in college. And that was six years ago, at Western Carolina. Save for five games last summer with the semipro Triangle Rattlers of Durham, N.C., Carter had been out of the game since 1999.

    But he hadn't given up on it quite yet. "I have a passion for football; I love football," said Carter, who is not to be confused with Jerome Carter, a safety from Florida State who was a fourth-round draft pick by the Rams.

    Jeremy Carter's affection was overtaken for a time by his potential in track. A standout sprinter and hurdler at Leesville Road High in Raleigh, Carter transferred after his freshman year to East Carolina, which had a better track program. He'd planned to play football there, too.

    "I transferred ... with the arrangement, supposedly, that my coach would let me play football. It was understood," Carter said. "After a year, I was pretty successful on the track, and he decided he didn't want to take the risk of me getting hurt. So, he didn't let me play.

    "I can understand the decision; it was a business decision. But it kind of hurt me."

    Carter became an All-American at East Carolina, but once college was finished, so, too, was his career in athletics. Or so it seemed. But now, Carter is getting a chance to follow other sprinters such as "Bullet" Bob Hayes and Willie Gault and make a successful transition from track to NFL turf.

    That's partly because Rams scout Tom Marino has a deep memory. "Tom remembered him from when he played football at Western Carolina and kept track of him," Rams general manager Charley Armey explained. "(Marino) found out he was working in California and contacted him."

    Carter, who said he's "always stayed in shape," had been honing his pass-catching skills. Back home in Raleigh, he'd hook up "anyone I could get to throw to me. When I was in California, I had Aaron Rodgers throwing to me."

    The same Aaron Rodgers who was Green Bay's first-round pick in the draft - the second quarterback selected. "Not bad," Carter said, laughing.

    After working out for Marino, Carter signed April 21 to a one-year contract. To prepare for minicamp, Carter said he would "run, run, run, and catch. I caught at least a hundred balls a day."

    Five wideouts went through the three days of drills, including sixth-round draft choice Dante Ridgeway and Brandon Middleton, who was with the Rams for part of the 2004 season. Carter held his own. "He has some talent," Armey said.

    And, of course, some speed. Carter said the Rams clocked him at 4.34 seconds for 40 yards, which would be among the best times on the team. "But I was disappointed with that," said Carter, who maintains that his best 40 is a scorching 4.21.

    Speed is only part of the package, though. Carter's goal was to show the coaches that he could run precise routes and haul in tough-to-catch balls, too. His next hurdle to clear will be at the Rams' full-squad minicap June 3-5, when he'll up against NFL veterans.

    "I feel like I fit. I don't feel uncomfortable at all," Carter said. "It wasn't too much of a problem for me to step back into it."

    The real problem will be making the team. The Rams' first four wideout positions are set: Isaac Bruce, Torry Holt, Kevin Curtis and Shaun McDonald. Two other spots are open, and at least seven players will be vying for them as coach Mike Martz tries to bulk up his roster for training camp. "We're looking for as much competition as we can possibly find," Martz said.

    And don't suggest to Carter that even if he fails to land a spot in St. Louis, he might generate some interest from other NFL teams. He wants to stay right here.

    "I'm serious about it. My plan is to make the team; that's what I'm trying to do," he said. "With my background, it'd be hard to find many opportunities. So, I'm trying to capitalize on this one."


  2. #2
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    Re: Receiver has speed but little experienc

    Those scouts will look everywhere for potential project players. Amazing.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

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    Re: Receiver has speed but little experienc

    You just never know what you might find:ramlogo:
    My heart beats crazy and my blood runs wild

  4. #4
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    Re: Receiver has speed but little experienc

    I still think we should take a look at Hakim again. If we can get him signed with a cap friendly contract I say we do it. Forget all of these projects and rookies a guy that knows our offense is there for the taking. Nice to hear stories like this but we need players not projects.
    Just Fix It

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    Re: Receiver has speed but little experienc

    Quote Originally Posted by rammiser
    I still think we should take a look at Hakim again. If we can get him signed with a cap friendly contract I say we do it. Forget all of these projects and rookies a guy that knows our offense is there for the taking. Nice to hear stories like this but we need players not projects.
    I disagree...we have our 4 studs and are looking to round the roster out with future potential, not an expensive free agent that has a propensity to drop the rock..

  6. #6
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    Re: Receiver has speed but little experienc

    I have to agree with SOG that our last two spots should be saved for potential with the other four spots set. And who knows maybe he can do kick returns

  7. #7
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    Re: Receiver has speed but little experienc

    Competition! Competition! Competion! Why not bring in a guy with blazing speed? Might turn out to be a diamond in the rough. Jerome is obviously a long shot to make the team, but let him have his chance.

    Az Hakim has had his day with the Rams; McDonald and Curtis know the playbook too and they are younger and on the rise. Ridgeway should make the roster and will bring toughness as well.....

    GO RAMMS!!!!!!!!!!

  8. #8
    RAMarkable is offline Registered User
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    Re: Receiver has speed but little experienc

    With all of these WR prospects (Ridgeway, Carter) might this be the end of Dane Looker? He obviously does not have the speed of these other guys and is strictly a "possession" type of wide-out. and doesn't have much potential beyond that?


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  9. #9
    MauiRam's Avatar
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    Re: Receiver has speed but little experienc

    If not for the fact that Jeff Wilkins selected Looker to be his holder (I believe it was in training camp 2 years ago), it is unlikely that he would have made the team last year. Looker can contribute on the kickoff and punt return units while filling in at WR when needed, however, if I recall correctly, Dane had at least one drop in 3rd down situations last year, which did not add to his reputation as a "money" receiver ala Ricky Proel.

    I believe you are right Ramarkable in suggesting that this might be the end for Dane Looker. Also to be noted is the fact that he was a free agent this year and was able to test the market. Apparently he did not receive any offers and therefore re-signed with the Rams...

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