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    Stacy's solid effort earns another start at running back

    Stacy's solid effort earns another start at running back
    By Joe Lyons / St. Louis P-D
    Tue., Oct. 08 a.m.


    With a solid performance in his first NFL start, Rams rookie Zac Stacy will get his second Sunday when the Rams take on the Texans in Houston.

    “I think we’ll probably start this game off the same way we did yesterday,’’ coach Jeff Fisher said Monday.

    A fifth-round draft choice in April, Stacy entered Sunday’s 34-20 victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars with just one carry this season, a 4-yard gain in the comeback win over Arizona in the season opener.

    On Sunday, the 5-foot-8, 214-pounder rushed 14 times for 78 yards, averaging 5.6 yards a carry.

    The 78 rushing yards are the third-highest total by a Rams rookie since the team drafted Steven Jackson back in 2004. Brian Leonard ran for 102 yards against the Arizona Cardinals in 2007 and last year, Daryl Richardson had an 83-yard game against the Washington Redskins.

    “Would’ve liked to see him get more carries, but that was the way the game went,” Fisher said. “He was hitting the holes and he had yards after contact — violent yards, as we refer to them at the running back position. He got where he needed to in the passing game and I thought on protection, he was excellent.’’


    ==================================================


    Defensive numbers

    Middle linebacker James Laurinaitis paced the Rams’ defense Sunday with 10 tackles and an interception in the end zone. Rookie linebacker Alec Ogletree had seven while safety Darian Stewart, making his first start of the season, added six.
    Ogletree and Stewart combined on a key defensive play that helped the Rams go up for good early in the second quarter. On a short pass from Jacksonville’s Blaine Gabbert to tight end Clay Harbor (Missouri State), Ogletree battled past a pair of blockers to make the tackle as Stewart managed to strip the ball. Following Stewart’s 19-yard return to the Jaguars’ 16, Sam Bradford threw a 16-yard touchdown pass to Lance Kendricks for a 17-10 lead.

    Chris Long and Michael Brockers had sacks Sunday. Long added three quarterback hits and one pressure. Robert Quinn, who leads the team with five sacks, was held without one but did have three hurries and five hits. On Matt Giordano’s interception, it was pressure from Quinn that forced Gabbert to step up and then air mail the ball over the head of intended receiver Justin Blackmon.



    The Jaguars took the early lead Sunday when Gabbert took advantage of a coverage breakdown to hit his slot receiver, Blackmon, with a short pass that the second-year receiver turned into a 67-yard touchdown.
    It was the first catch of the season for Blackmon, who missed the opening four games while serving a suspension for violating the NFL’s substance-abuse program. Blackmon finished the game with five catches for 136 yards.

    Fisher credited the Jaguars for putting the ball into play quickly.

    “The ball was snapped really quick — the chain crew wasn’t even set up — officials are trying to get in position and they snapped the ball,’’ Fisher said. “In a close game, it could be a difference-maker. We felt like we would be able to overcome it, but we definitely have to learn from it.’’

    Following the game, Fisher said the Rams’ coaches were also to blame.

    “We tried to get the call in and didn’t get it communicated,’’ he said. “I’d like to see things communicated (better, but Jacksonville’s) a very, very fast-tempo offense. ... The perception is that Philly’s got the fast tempo, but (Jacksonville was) faster than Philly in their preseason game.

    “We worked at it all week, and we got caught off guard once.’’


    ==================================================


    Ram-blings

    Fisher credited the improved running game with helping the Rams boost their third-down efficiency. The Rams converted eight of 19 (42 percent) Sunday after struggling on third down in blowout losses at Dallas (one of 13, 8 percent) and to San Francisco (three of 17, 18 percent).
    “Disappointed that we got stopped on a third-and-one, but we had third-and-twos and third-and-threes and they’re much easier to convert.’’ the coach said.

    • The Rams did a little bit of shuffling at left guard during the game, with starter Chris Williams taking 47 snaps and Shelley Smith getting 26.
    “Just trying to get (Smith) some work, that’s all,” Fisher said. “Chris didn’t have any problems.”

    • Fisher said the Rams came out of the game relatively healthy and hope to have everyone, with the exception of tackle Rodger Saffold and safety T.J. McDonald, available in Houston.


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    Re: Stacy's solid effort earns another start at running back

    Perhaps Zac Stacy will develop into a true power RB with / for the Rams, in the mold of Steven Jackson (sans his size obviously), even on a rotational basis with Richardson & Cunningham.

    Hopefully Stacy will turn into Zuperman along with an improved OL.

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    Re: Stacy's solid effort earns another start at running back

    Quote Originally Posted by RealRam View Post
    Perhaps Zac Stacy will develop into a true power RB with / for the Rams, in the mold of Steven Jackson (sans his size obviously), even on a rotational basis with Richardson & Cunningham.

    Hopefully Stacy will turn into Zuperman along with an improved OL.
    Daydreamer mode BTW. STAY-Ceeeee!

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    Re: Stacy's solid effort earns another start at running back

    Rams report: 'Sore' Stacy sits out practice

    Rookie running back Zac Stacy, who ran for 78 yards in his first NFL start Sunday in a 34-20 victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars at the Edward Jones Dome, did not practice Wednesday as the Rams began preparations for Sunday's game against the Texans in Houston.

    Both teams are 2-3.

    But head coach Jeff Fisher, who said Monday that he expected to stick with Stacy at running back, downplayed the absence.

    “He just took the day off, a little sore after that outing, but he'll be fine.'' the coach said.

    Stacy left in the fourth quarter of the Jacksonville game due to sore ribs.

    INJURY REPORT

    Joining Stacy on the initial injury report of the week were right tackle Rodger Saffold (knee) and cornerback Cortland Finnegan (hamstring), who did not practice. Defensive end William Hayes (knee) and defensive tackle Matt Conrath (concussion) returned to practice on a limited basis.

    Houston's Wednesday injury list featured 19 players, including five who did not practice _ starting receiver Andre Johnson (shin), starting guard Wade Smith (knee) and starting kick returner Keshawn Martin (shoulder) as well as reserve linebackers Tim Dobbins (hamstring) and Darryl Sharpton (foot).

    Starters limited in practice Wednesday for Houston were guard Brandon Brooks (toe), tackle Duane Brown (toe), running back Arian Foster (thumb, chest) and safety Ed Reed (knee). Other starters listed but participating fully in practice were defensive ends J.J. Watt (nose) and Antonio Smith (quadriceps), linebacker Brian Cushing (knee), center Chris Myers (biceps) and tackle Derek Newton (knee).

    RAM-BLINGS

    Stacy, a fifth-round draft choice from Vanderbilt, is one of the nominees for the Pepsi Next NFL Rookie of the Week honors. Other nominees are Green Bay running back Eddie Lacy, Arizona defensive back Tyran Mathieu, New York Jets quarterback Geno Smith and Dallas receiver Terrance Williams.

    Online voting at on.nfl.com/15T8n6C runs through Friday at 2 p.m.

    • The Texans placed two-time Pro Bowl tight end Owen Daniels on the injured reserve/designated to return list on Wednesday, meaning he'll miss the next eight weeks of the season. Daniels, who suffered a broken leg late in Houston's 34-3 loss to the San Francisco ***** on Sunday night, is second on the team with 24 catches for 252 yards. With three touchdown catches, he's tied for the team lead with his replacement, Garrett Graham.

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    Re: Stacy's solid effort earns another start at running back

    Update on Stacy's condition:


    Stacy, Saffold return to practice
    By Jim Thomas / STL P-D
    Oct. 10, 2013 p.m.



    After missing Wednesday’s practice to rest his sore ribs, running back Zac Stacy returned to the practice field Thursday on a limited basis.

    Stacy indicated to reporters that sitting out Wednesday was more of a precautionary measure and said he felt good.

    “Yes sir,” he said. “Just out here getting some great looks out at practice, working on techniques, and hopefully it'll carry over to the game.”

    Stacy rushed for 78 yards in Sunday’s 34-20 victory over Jacksonville, the third-highest total for a Rams rookie since Steven Jackson was drafted in 2004. He is expected to start this coming Sunday in Houston.

    Also returning for the Rams after a much longer absence was right tackle Rodger Saffold. Saffold has missed three games since suffering a medial collateral ligament injury to his left knee against Atlanta in Week 2.

    Saffold obviously has some rust to knock off, and did his work with the scout team in practice Wednesday. He’s more likely to play in Carolina on Oct. 20 than against the Texans.

    “It’s cool to be out there and go with the guys again,” Saffold said. “I know I’ve got to shake a bunch of rust off, get back into the groove.”

    Saffold, Stacy, and defensive end Williams Hayes (knee) were listed as limited on the Rams’ official injury report. Defensive tackle Matt Conrath (concussion) was full participation. Cornerback Cortland Finnegan (hamstring) did not practice Thursday and is on course to miss his second consecutive game.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Meanwhile in Houston, the Texans had 20 players - or nearly 40 percent of the roster - on Thursday’s injury report. Of those 20, 10 either didn’t practice or had limited participation. Among those not practicing were star wide receiver Andre Johnson (shin) and wide receiver/return man Keshawn Martin (shoulder). Johnson’s availability against the Rams may be a game-time decision.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    I hope the Rams running game will continue to develop, protect, and churn out Y A R D S!
    Last edited by RealRam; -10-11-2013 at 12:57 AM.

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