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  • Rams' new tackle contributing

    Rams' new tackle contributing
    By R.B. Fallstrom, The Associated Press
    MACOMB, Ill. -- Newly signed offensive lineman Greg Randall hit the ground rumbling with the St. Louis Rams.

    The 333-pound tackle, who bolsters an injury-plagued position, showed up at training camp for a physical on Sunday night after agreeing to a contract. On Monday, he participated in about 10 plays of a scrimmage.


    "Obviously we feel pretty good about him, to bring him in like this and throw him in like we did," coach Mike Martz said. "So, he'll compete."

    The Rams had been down to 10 healthy linemen before they signed Randall, who was released by the ***** in June. Tackle Kyle Turley was in St. Louis having his ailing back checked, center Dave Wohlabaugh is recovering from hip surgery and tackle Orlando Pace is a contract holdout.

    Randall, who is 6-6 and 333 pounds, is a former fourth-round pick of the Patriots in 2000 and played his first three seasons for New England. He started all 16 games for the Houston Texans last year at right tackle, but his stay with the ***** was brief.

    Opening a letter from the team, Randall discovered he had been cut. If he makes it with the Rams, that'll be incentive for the two games with San Francisco this year.

    "I'm looking forward to it," he said. "But the main thing is to try to learn this system and try to get this offense down."

    Randall used to be known as Robinson-Randall. For a time he used the last name of both his mother and his father, who died of cancer at age 24.

    The Rams also were trying to sign Chris Dishman, a guard-center formerly of the Cardinals.

    Martz was unsure when Turley, who underwent surgery for a herniated disc in March, might return to the team. Turley was considering visiting a back specialist, Dr. Robert Watkins, in Los Angeles.

    "That's going to take some time," Martz said. "When you're dealing with a back, particularly since he's had surgery, he wants and we've encouraged him to always get a second and third opinion so he feels good about where he is."

    The Rams released kicker Dillon Pieffer, a rookie from UNLV who signed with the team on July 26. That leaves incumbent Jeff Wilkins as the only kicker in camp.

    Close call: Rookie defensive end Anthony Hargrove avoided an injury at the end of Monday's practice when he turned his left ankle. He spent time on the trainer's table, but after practice Hargrove seemed fine and the ankle wasn't even wrapped.

    "It happens all the time, so I should be all right," Hargrove said. "It was scary at first because I felt like I broke it.

    "Walking around on it, it feels better."

    Hargrove, the team's third-round draft pick, is happy with his performance so far even though line coach Bill Kollar has ridden him mercilessly. He's among the candidates to replace the departed Grant Wistrom at end.

    "I'm glad they're riding me because I want to show everybody I can make plays, I can make it happen, I can be a contributor to the team this year," Hargrove said. "I like the confidence he has that I can make a play almost every down."

    Doughnut brothers: Pastry-loving offensive guard Adam Timmerman and guard-center Andy McCollum are known on the team as the "Doughnut Brothers," and fans making the trip from St. Louis brought them a little taste of home -- three dozen of their preferred brand.

    Well, almost three dozen.

    "They hit the nail right on the head," Timmerman said. "There was one missing, but we were like hey, if we were driving up, there wouldn't have been any left."

    Short workout: Rain and lightning forced the Rams to cut Monday's single workout about 20 minutes short.

    "We got some good hitting; I thought we were going to get hit by lightning," Timmerman said. "At one point it was like we were surrounded.

    "If Mom was around, she would have said 'Get in the house!"'


    __________________________________________________________
    Keeping the Rams Nation Talking

  • #2
    Re: Rams' new tackle contributing

    Bulger's going to need all the help he can get. It's great the the FO made a good choice and hopefully the rest of the line can pick up the slack.

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    • RamDez
      New tackle makes immediate contribution
      by RamDez
      New tackle makes immediate contribution


      R.B. FALLSTROM

      Associated Press

      MACOMB, Ill. - Newly signed offensive lineman Greg Randall hit the ground rumbling with the St. Louis Rams.

      The 333-pound tackle, who bolsters an injury-plagued position, showed up at training camp for a physical on Sunday night after agreeing to a contract. On Monday, he participated in about 10 plays of a scrimmage.

      "Obviously we feel pretty good about him, to bring him in like this and throw him in like we did," coach Mike Martz said. "So, he'll compete."

      The Rams had been down to 10 healthy linemen before they signed Randall, who was released by the ***** in June. Tackle Kyle Turley was in St. Louis having his ailing back checked, center Dave Wohlabaugh is recovering from hip surgery and tackle Orlando Pace is a contract holdout.

      Randall, who is 6-6 and 333 pounds, is a former fourth-round pick of the Patriots in 2000 and played his first three seasons for New England. He started all 16 games for the Houston Texans last year at right tackle, but his stay with the ***** was brief.

      Opening a letter from the team, Randall discovered he had been cut. If he makes it with the Rams, that'll be incentive for the two games with San Francisco this year.

      "I'm looking forward to it," he said. "But the main thing is to try to learn this system and try to get this offense down."

      Randall used to be known as Robinson-Randall. For a time he used the last name of both his mother and his father, who died of cancer at age 24.

      The Rams also were trying to sign Chris Dishman, a guard-center formerly of the Cardinals.

      Martz was unsure when Turley, who underwent surgery for a herniated disc in March, might return to the team. Turley was considering visiting a back specialist, Dr. Robert Watkins, in Los Angeles.

      "That's going to take some time," Martz said. "When you're dealing with a back, particularly since he's had surgery, he wants and we've encouraged him to always get a second and third opinion so he feels good about where he is."

      The Rams released kicker Dillon Pieffer, a rookie from UNLV who signed with the team on July 26. That leaves incumbent Jeff Wilkins as the only kicker in camp.

      -----

      CLOSE CALL: Rookie defensive end Anthony Hargrove avoided an injury at the end of Monday's practice when he turned his left ankle. He spent time on the trainer's table, but after practice Hargrove seemed fine and the ankle wasn't even wrapped.

      "It happens all the time, so I should be all right," Hargrove said. "It was scary at first because I felt like I broke it.

      "Walking around on it, it feels better."

      Hargrove, the team's third-round draft pick, is happy with his performance...
      -08-03-2004, 12:16 PM
    • RamDez
      Anthony Hargrove hurt
      by RamDez
      Veteran tackle joins depleted line
      By Bill Coats
      Of the Post-Dispatch
      08/02/2004





      MACOMB, Ill. - Help arrived Sunday night in a big package. A 6-foot-6, 333-pound package, to be precise.

      Tackle Greg Randall, a five-year NFL veteran, hustled from his hometown of Houston to Western Illinois University, signed a one-year contract with the Rams, and was on the practice field Monday morning. Randall was hired to shore up an offensive line that has become short on personnel during training camp.

      "I'm very excited. I'm just trying to come out here and work hard," said Randall, who has huffing and puffing a bit after a full-pads workout that was cut to about 90 minutes because of a thunderstorm. No afternoon practice was scheduled.

      Randall, working at right tackle with the second team, took part in full-contact action. "Obviously, we feel pretty good about him to bring him in like this and throw him in there like we did," coach Mike Martz said. "We put him in a live situation for about 10 plays out here, and he was able to perform pretty well."

      With Orlando Pace absent during contract negotiations and fellow tackle Kyle Turley (back) and center Dave Wohlabaugh (hip) out with injuries, 60 percent of the front five is missing. Grant Williams, Andy King and Scott Tercero have been filling in on the first unit, but depth had become a concern.

      Randall, 26, was New England's fourth-round pick (127th overall) in the 2000 draft out of Michigan State. He started 23 games for the Patriots over three seasons; he played against the Rams in the Super Bowl following the '01 season. He was traded to Houston and started all 16 games at right tackle last year for the Texans, then signed with San Francisco in the offseason as an unrestricted free agent.

      His time with the ***** was short: He was released in June. "They sent me a letter," Randall said. "Nobody called me."

      More than a month passed before anyone else called, either. "I was a little worried, but you can't get too down about it," he said. "If you don't get picked up, you've got to move on and do something else."

      For now, Randall is undergoing a crash course with the Rams' playbook. "It's tough; there's a lot to learn," he said. "You have to try to figure out what you're supposed to do on a play instead of just relaxing and playing. But it's a great offense."

      Plus, he's trying to get into football shape as rapidly as possible. "Being in pads and then going against people live is completely different from just getting up and running," Randall said. The opportunity to resume his career "means a lot to me," he said. "I'm happy to be here, and I just want to go out here and work hard and try to do my business."

      ...
      -08-03-2004, 12:17 PM
    • RamDez
      Turley remains out of camp with bad back
      by RamDez
      Turley remains out of camp with bad back
      By Bill Coats
      Of the Post-Dispatch
      08/09/2004





      MACOMB, Ill. - As Rams coach Mike Martz addressed a small group of reporters after Monday afternoon's practice, a cell phone went off.

      "Kyle, is that you?" Martz asked.

      He was joking, of course. Still, the training camp absence of first-team right tackle Kyle Turley has edged into its second week, and it's hardly a laughing matter. No determination has been made on how long he'll be away from Western Illinois University while having his back examined by a series of specialists.

      Martz hasn't been able to reach Turley, but he indicated that Rams officials have spoken with Turley's agent, Tom Condon.

      "Kyle's down in the dumps," Martz said. "This thing isn't as far along as he wants it to be, and he's very, very frustrated. ... I understand what Kyle is going through; I feel for the guy."

      Turley, 28, had surgery in March to repair a herniated disc. He skipped the on-field work at minicamp in May, but participated fully when camp workouts began July 28. Within a few days, he experienced pain in the same spot of the original injury and he was forced to the sideline again.

      Before he returned to St. Louis on Aug. 1, Turley acknowledged that he was concerned about his future in the NFL.

      Turley has been examined by Rams physicians in St. Louis and by Dr. Robert Watkins in Los Angeles. He also is expected to see Dr. James Andrews in Birmingham, Ala.

      Condon could not be reached to comment Monday.

      "We've just got to get a conclusion medically in terms of a course of action he needs to take," Martz said. "Kyle's a guy that's played at an extremely high level his whole career, and now all of a sudden he's got something that's keeping him down. Guys as high-strung and competitive as Kyle is, that's hard to deal with. He'll be much better when he knows what the course of action is and he can focus on that."

      Other absences

      Three other Rams - center Dave Wohlabaugh, offensive tackle Jeremy Phillips and defensive end Kevin Aldridge - also were absent Monday.

      Wohlabaugh, who started every game last season but has missed all of camp, is having further evaluations on his hip in St. Louis and in Ohio, where surgery was performed in March on a torn labrum.

      Phillips, who has been troubled by stingers, returned to St. Louis to have his neck examined.

      Martz said that Aldridge, a second-year player with a shot at making the 53-man roster, had been granted an indefinite leave to take care of "a very serious personal issue."

      Back in business

      Several Rams who had been nursing minor aches and pains were back on the field Monday after a 1 1/2-day break following Saturday's
      ...
      -08-10-2004, 12:56 PM
    • RamDez
      Dishman is back after a visit home
      by RamDez


      Dishman is back after a visit home
      By Bill Coats

      Of the Post-Dispatch
      08/19/2004


      MACOMB, Ill. - When the football players at Lincoln (Neb.) North Star High saw Chris Dishman's Hummer parked outside the weight room early one morning this week, they figured he'd be coaching their team again.

      "They thought I was released," Dishman said after Wednesday afternoon's practice at Rams training camp. "They (said), 'Geez, you already got cut?'"

      No, Dishman is still with the Rams, vying for a job on an offensive line badly lacking in personnel. But he had some unfinished business that needed to be addressed, so he left for his Garland, Neb., home after Thursday night's preseason game in St. Louis and returned to Western Illinois University about noon Wednesday.

      "Just a lot of personal stuff," said Dishman, who had decided to retire after seven NFL seasons before Rams coach Mike Martz persuaded him earlier this month to accept a one-year deal and report to camp. Dishman said it seemed like a good idea at the time, but . . .

      "My kids, I didn't get to say goodbye to them," said Dishman, 30, a father of two. "It was getting tough for them, crying every night and calling me up and telling me they wanted me to come home. It started to make me (wonder) if . . . my retirement wasn't a bad plan. The money's all good and everything, but when you've got kids at home, the money doesn't really mean anything to you."

      Although Dishman acknowledged that "definitely there were second thoughts," he emphasized that he never seriously considered re-retiring. "My wife and my dad both said, you signed a contract, don't back out like some of those guys," he said. "I was raised that way. There was no way that I wasn't coming back."

      But he wanted to see his children again, as well as his extended family at North Star, where he'd been serving as an assistant coach. "I went up and saw them practice," he said. "I let them know why I wasn't there personally. Calling them on the phone, I think, is inconsiderate when you've spent four months with these kids.

      "Some of them don't have fathers. It's not a troubled group, but it's a new school there, so they're getting kids there from all over town. If you're a role model to them, you need to go back and show them your face and tell them you haven't forgotten about them."

      Two players are hurt

      Two more Rams went down with injuries Wednesday, but Martz reported that neither player was seriously hurt. Offensive tackle Grant Williams, who probably will be in the lineup when the Rams open the regular season Sept. 12, turned his right ankle in the morning practice and skipped the afternoon workout.

      Cornerback DeJuan Groce appeared to be much more
      ...
      -08-19-2004, 02:49 PM
    • RamDez
      T Randall Joins Rams
      by RamDez
      T Randall Joins Rams
      Monday, August 2, 2004


      By NICK WAGONER
      Staff Writer


      Maybe the phone line was down. Perhaps nobody had his number. Whatever the case, offensive lineman Greg Randall is back in the NFL with something to prove.

      One day after Kyle Turley left training camp in Macomb, Ill., to return to St. Louis for back examinations, Randall made his debut as a Ram. With Orlando Pace, the other starting offensive tackle, stalled in contract negotiations, St. Louis desperately needed some depth on the offensive line.

      Enter Grant Williams. Williams, who has made a living as the official left tackle of Rams’ training camp and the team’s third tackle, told coach Mike Martz about a mammoth tackle with Super Bowl experience, who just happened to be a free agent.

      Martz said Randall looked as good as a player who hasn’t practiced yet can.

      “Obviously, we feel good about him,” Martz said. “This guy just came in last night and he was able to perform pretty well.”

      Randall, who enters his fifth season out of Michigan State, stands 6-feet-6 and tips the scale at 333 pounds. He spent the 2003 season with Houston, starting every game at right tackle. He also started on the New England team that beat the Rams in the 2001 Super Bowl.

      Randall signed with St. Louis on Sunday and arrived in Macomb on Sunday evening. The Rams released kicker Dillon Pieffer to make room for Randall. It came as somewhat of a surprise that Randall was without a job as long as he was. San Francisco released him in June; only it didn’t do it the conventional way. There was nobody sent to tell Randall the coach wants to see him.

      Instead, Randall received a letter in the mail from the *****. The letter told him his services were no longer needed and Randall began the process of looking for a new job. St. Louis fit the bill and contacted Randall at home in Houston. He quickly agreed to a one-year contract. He said he is looking forward to his shot at the Rams’ NFC West rivals, but he has other worries right now.

      “The main thing is just trying to learn the system and get the offense down,” Randall said.

      Martz said the Rams might add another lineman, with former Arizona interior lineman Chris Dishman a possibility. The Rams had yet to contact Dishman on Monday morning.

      RAINING ON THE RAMS: For the first time since camp began Wednesday, the weather didn’t cooperate with St. Louis’ morning practice. Thunder, lightning and steady rain was the order of the day.

      Martz said the Rams cut practice a little short because of worries about the lightning. Practicing in full pads, St. Louis went live in the 11-on-11 drills at the end of practice. Martz eliminated the 7-on-7 drill and a few others.

      Linebacker Robert Thomas made a diving interception in the 11-on-11 that drew cheers from the crowd and an...
      -08-03-2004, 12:15 PM
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