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  • TSN Rams Report

    Jim Thomas

    DE Bryce Fisher likely will start, probably on the right side. Fisher is relentless and quick off the line, and he has some good pass-rush moves. How Fisher will hold up against the run is unknown. . . .

    Rookie C Larry Turner might not be ready to play this year, but the team doesn't need him to because it has Dave Wohlabaugh and LG Andy McCollum, who also can play center. But Turner has impressed coaches this spring, displaying good technique and quick feet in pass-blocking drills. He has a thick lower body, allowing him to anchor against bigger defenders. Turner needs to get stronger and more acquainted with the team's complex pass blocking schemes.


    Torry Holt and Isaac Bruce form one of the NFL's best duos. Holt has overtaken Bruce as the No. 1 option. Holt has it all: hands, speed and run-after-the-catch ability. But Bruce, 31, still commands plenty of respect. He remains one of the best at getting in and out of breaks, and he delivers in the clutch. Dane Looker excels on third downs and in the red zone as a slot receiver. Mike Furrey made enough plays the second half of 2003 to enter camp as the No. 4 option. Kevin Curtis and Shaun McDonald need strong training camps to dent the top four after injuries wrecked their rookie seasons. Curtis has the speed to stretch defenses. McDonald is shifty and could thrive in the slot. He also has potential as a punt returner.

  • #2
    Re: TSN Rams Report

    Curtis has speed to stretch defenses. Something this offense was extremely lacking for two years.


    • #3
      Re: TSN Rams Report

      Originally posted by txramsfan
      Curtis has speed to stretch defenses. Something this offense was extremely lacking for two years.
      I don't think it is an overstatement to say that Curtis could usher the rebirth of the Greatest Show On Turf. Smart guy, good hands, great wheels. Add that to the position slots (Looker, Furrey, McDonald) and the best corp duo in football (Holt, Ike). If the O-line has solidified any from last year, Bulger will have a feast in front of him every Sunday.
      The more things change, the more they stay the same.


      • #4
        Re: TSN Rams Report

        Hubi, I 100% agree. There was a poll awhile back regarding who the "X" factor would be this year and I think for certain it is curtis.

        If curtis can come in as the slot receiver and do 1/2 the things that Az did, plus make some of those spectacular catches we saw last preseason, the Rams would have that extra threat that they are missing. Right now, cover Bruce, double cover Holt, and bump Faulk coming out of the backfield to disrupt the timing and you've got a pretty good game plan. If Curtis can blaze, we'd be back to "who you gonna cover?".


        Related Topics


        • RamDez
          Curtis excels in place of injured Bruce
          by RamDez
          Curtis excels in place of injured Bruce
          By Bill Coats
          Of the Post-Dispatch
          Sunday, Jan. 16 2005

          ATLANTA - Second-year wide receiver Kevin Curtis, who played in only four games
          in an injury-plagued rookie year and didn't catch his first pass this season
          until the third game, was thrust into the NFL playoff spotlight Saturday night.

          Veteran Isaac Bruce was a late scratch for the Rams' NFC semifinal game against
          the Atlanta Falcons. Curtis started in his place, and he was the team's leading
          receiver in a 47-17 loss. He had seven receptions for 128 yards and a

          Curtis' impact was felt early. On the Rams' fifth play, quarterback Marc Bulger
          found Curtis on the right side, and his sprint to the end zone completed a
          57-yard scoring play that made it 7-7.

          Despite his third big game in a row, Curtis took little solace after the Rams'
          season came to a crushing conclusion.

          "It doesn't really take the place of losing a big football game," he said.
          "It's not the way you want it to end."

          Bruce had been bothered by a hip injury late in the regular season, and he
          suffered what originally was described as a groin pull last weekend in the
          Rams' 27-20 first-round victory in Seattle. Coach Mike Martz later described it
          as a stomach-muscle problem.

          Bruce declined to speak with reporters after Saturday night's defeat. But
          according to a Rams official, Bruce tested the injury a couple of hours before
          kickoff at the Georgia Dome and deemed it too sore to play.

          Curtis acknowledged that sliding into Bruce's spot carried stress.

          "Oh, yeah, it's a lot of pressure," Curtis said. "Obviously, you never want
          Isaac out of a game; it hurts. I just tried to go in and be a decent
          replacement for him."

          With Curtis lining up opposite Torry Holt with the first unit, Shaun McDonald
          and Dane Looker moved into the Nos. 3 and 4 wideout slots. McDonald had four
          catches for 37 yards, and Looker, who hadn't seen much action other than on
          special teams, latched onto three passes for 38 yards. Holt had two catches for
          42 yards.

          "It is nice to get back in the lineup and catch a couple of balls," Looker
          said. "But it's awful when you lose. ... All week in practice we knew that
          Isaac was questionable; he didn't take many reps in practice. You know
          something's really wrong with him when he doesn't play, because he's as
          competitive a guy as I've ever seen and he's as tough a football player as I've
          ever seen."

          While emphasizing that losing Bruce was a blow, Bulger said: "But that's the
          nature of the beast. It happens, and you have to move on from it." ...
          -01-16-2005, 04:47 AM
        • GSOT
          The time is now for Curtis
          by GSOT
          I feel we are wasting a talent by playing Curtis in the slot. I feel he needs to start, if not here somewhere else. He could have a huge impact as a big play receiver if given the chance to start all year. i know how you feela bout bruce but thats just me
          -01-20-2006, 09:34 AM
        • RamWraith
          Young guns bring new energy to offense
          by RamWraith
          By Jim Thomas
          Of the Post-Dispatch
          Wednesday, Oct. 13 2004

          At its apex, the Greatest Show on Turf wasn't just about Marshall Faulk, or
          Isaac Bruce, or Torry Holt, or Kurt Warner. It was about all of them - and
          more. Az-Zahir Hakim and Ricky Proehl as the No. 3 and No. 4 wide receivers.
          Roland Williams, and then Ernie Conwell, at tight end.

          Make no mistake, Faulk, Bruce and Holt were the money players. Still are. But
          there simply were too many options across the board. You couldn't cover them
          all. And that was the beauty of the offense back in the "glory days."
          Which brings us to the Rams' back-to-back victories over San Francisco and
          Seattle. In those contests, the Rams' seven touchdowns were scored by wide
          receiver Shaun McDonald (two), wide receiver Kevin Curtis (one), running back
          Steven Jackson (one), tight end Brandon Manumaleuna (one), fullback Joey
          Goodspeed (one), and quarterback Marc Bulger (one).

          Since the start of the Rams' 1999 Super Bowl championship season, Faulk, Bruce
          and Holt have scored 159 touchdowns. Until that Oct. 3 San Francisco game, the
          Rams had gone 24 consecutive contests with Faulk, Bruce or Holt scoring at
          least one TD.

          But now, for the first time with Faulk, Bruce and Holt on the roster and
          available to play, the Rams have won back-to-back games with none of the three
          scoring a TD.

          Could it be a sign that the "good old days" are back on offense? Are the Rams
          developing the kind of multiple options that characterized the '99, 2000, and
          2001 squads? (All three of those teams scored 500-plus points.)

          Coach Mike Martz stopped short of such a sweeping assessment. Way short.

          "This is totally different," he said after the Seattle game. "This is just a
          completely different team. We're just trying to find a way to win."

          Not that the youngsters aren't making life easier for the Rams offensively.

          "Some of these young players are stepping to the forefront right now," Martz
          said. "These guys now are taking the load off some of the other players. And as
          they step to the forefront, that makes it easier to manage the game. These
          other guys, now, you've got to account for them."

          Leave it to free safety Aeneas Williams to dream of the possibilities.

          "You have a dual threat at running back," Williams said. "You have four, five
          receivers. Why wouldn't you think that you have the potential to have an
          explosive offense like we did before?"

          The emergence of Dane Looker last season gave the Rams at least a reasonable
          facsimile of Proehl, who signed with Carolina following...
          -10-13-2004, 06:26 AM
        • RamWraith
          With Bruce hurt, Curtis prepares for starter's role
          by RamWraith
          Associated Press

          ST. LOUIS - Should the bell ring, receiver Kevin Curtis is ready to step in and start for the St. Louis Rams.

          "He's prepared," Rams coach Mike Martz said Wednesday at Rams Park. "These guys, they understand. We tell these guys all the time, as every coach in the league does, if you're here on the roster, you're here to be a starter eventually.

          "You don't know when that's going to happen."

          It likely will happen Sunday for Curtis.

          Veteran receiver Isaac Bruce was forced out of last Sunday's game against Tennessee late in the first half after hyperextending his toe. He is listed as doubtful for Sunday's game at the Meadowlands against the New York Giants.

          Though there's a chance he could start Sunday, Curtis said he won't change his preparations much this week.

          "It doesn't change it a whole lot," Curtis said. "Every week, I've got to be ready like last week when Isaac did go down. ... I've just got to make sure I'm on top of it."

          Bruce's injury gave Curtis a more-prominent role in the offense against the Titans, and he responded by catching five passes for 56 yards and a touchdown. The scoring reception, a 10-yard pass from quarterback Marc Bulger in the fourth quarter, was the game-winner in a 31-27 decision for the Rams.

          Normally the No. 3 receiver for St. Louis, Curtis receives plenty of playing time in the pass-happy St. Louis offense, and he's gaining more confidence with each game.

          "The more playing time you get, the more comfortable you start feeling out there," Curtis said. "Even this past week, in the second half when I was in there every play, I started feeling more comfortable. I was a little bit more into the game. It's a good experience for me."

          The Utah State product, a third-round draft choice (74th overall) in 2003, hauled in seven passes for 63 yards in the season opener at San Francisco. At Arizona in the Rams' second game, the 5-foot-11, 186-pound Curtis made two receptions for 29 yards.

          "We have the luxury of having four really good receivers," Bulger said. "At the same time, since Isaac will be down, Dane (Looker) can step in and play the fourth receiver.

          "We run pretty much all the routes with him," Bulger said of Curtis. "He's a complete receiver. He can do it all. Kevin can start for most teams. There's different things that Kevin does better than Isaac."

          Curtis did not want to touch that remark.

          "Oh, I don't know if I want to say that," Curtis said. "I'm not better than Isaac. I would say almost everything he does is a lot better than I do. There might be something where we might be different, but we're obviously not the same player."

          He credited Bruce and...
          -09-29-2005, 05:57 AM
        • RamDez
          Curtis shows he's ready to contribute
          by RamDez
          Curtis shows he's ready to contribute
          By Jim Thomas
          Of the Post-Dispatch

          MACOMB, Ill. - Guess who was the last player to finish signing autographs at Hanson Field following Saturday's Rams-Bears scrimmage?

          Marc Bulger? Isaac Bruce? Aeneas Williams? Torry Holt?

          Not even close. Would you believe it was Kevin Curtis?

          That's what he gets for scoring a highlight-reel touchdown on a 35-yard run and catch from rookie quarterback Jeff Smoker.

          "My arm's a little sore," Curtis joked Saturday, finally making his way to the Brophy Hall locker room area nearly half an hour after the scrimmage.

          Curtis may have writer's cramp, but at least his right leg's not nearly as sore as it was last season. Curtis finally appears to have put his broken fibula behind him.

          "This is big for me," Curtis said. "I missed a lot of camp last year before I broke my leg, so it's good to get out there and get a lot of reps."

          Curtis, a third-round draft pick from Utah State in 2003, missed a couple of weeks early in training camp a year ago with a quadriceps muscle injury. He was just rounding into form, and flashing his defense-stretching speed, when he suffered the broken leg in a preseason game at Buffalo. Curtis had caught a 66-yard touchdown pass earlier in that game.

          After the injury in Buffalo, Curtis thought he'd be sidelined four to five weeks. But the bone never seemed to heal properly, making Curtis' rookie season a wash. He appeared in only four games - all around midseason - and caught four passes for 13 yards.

          "It definitely dragged on a lot longer than I'd hoped for," Curtis said.

          The broken bone never re-connected, Curtis said. "I don't know if it was because I was on it too early, or if it was how I broke it. But I was playing on it all year, practicing and that.

          "We tried to let it just rest, see if it could heal up on its own. But it'd been so long, that they felt like they needed to put a plate in there just to keep it stable so the bones could heal."

          As a result, Curtis had a second operation last February - nearly six months after the initial injury and surgery. A permanent plate was inserted in the leg, with six screws to keep it in place.

          "The bone is pretty much completely healed," Curtis said. "That's not going to give me any problem."

          He may have some additional discomfort related to scar tissue for the next several months, but the worst is behind him.

          "I'm feeling pretty good," Curtis said. "With two-a-days, we kind of got the camp legs going. We're running a lot. So yeah, it's a little sore. But nothing that's really slowed me down too much."

          Curtis certainly didn't look slow on
          -08-09-2004, 04:07 PM