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  • Kennedy suffers broken foot--out season

    By Jim Thomas
    Of the Post-Dispatch
    08/05/2004
    MACOMB, Ill. - The Rams had their first serious injury of training camp Thursday afternoon, when defensive tackle Jimmy Kennedy suffered a broken right foot that could sideline him for most, if not all, of the 2004 season.

    Kennedy suffered the injury during a one-on-one pass-rushing drill against the Chicago Bears, who are in town for three days of joint practices with the Rams. It was a non-contact injury: Kennedy was planting his foot to make a cut when he heard a pop, and went down with the injury.

    Coach Mike Martz was unaware of the severity of the injury after practice, and told the assembled media at the time that it was simply a foot injury. But post-practice examination by the Rams' medical staff revealed the severity of the injury.

    Kennedy left Macomb on crutches at about 7:30 p.m. Thursday, heading back for St. Louis and surgery today. Martz could not be reached later to comment, but team officials confirmed the injury and confirmed the fact that Kennedy will be sidelined for at least three months.

    Under that timetable, Kennedy would be sidelined until early to mid-November. Even then, and with no further setbacks, it might take several additional weeks for Kennedy to round into "football" shape.

    The No. 12 overall pick in the 2003 draft, Kennedy had a highly disappointing rookie season. But he dedicated himself more fully to offseason conditioning and reported to training camp bigger, stronger and in much better shape this season.

    It would be a stretch to say that Kennedy had been a star during the first week of Rams camp at Western Illinois University, but he at least looked like he belonged, and looked like he might be able to contribute in the Rams' defensive line rotation this season.

    Ryan Pickett and Damione Lewis are the starters at defensive tackle. But Kennedy's injury leaves only newcomer Bernard Holsey with any experience as a backup tackle. Holsey has been basically a spectator in camp so far as he recovers from offseason surgery. The Rams have been using Tyoka Jackson mainly as a defensive end in camp, but Kennedy's injury might force the Rams to use Jackson more at tackle.

  • #2
    Re: Kennedy suffers broken foot--out season

    Why must the injury bulls-eye be fixed so squarely on the Rams? What evil mojo karma universe thing have we upset over the past couple of years? I mean do we need to sacrifice a goat or exorcise a demon or what. Why can we not stay healthy?!?!
    The more things change, the more they stay the same.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Kennedy suffers broken foot--out season

      Every team has injuries.

      This is very disappointing, though. I had high hopes for Kennedy, and it sounds like he worked very hard this offseason to make himself ready to play this year.

      They still have the ability to line up a starting line of Little, Pickett, Lewis and (my guess at who will emerge) Hargrove. The back-up rotation of T.Jackson, Holsey, Moran/Flowers and Fisher is a bit thin, though.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Kennedy suffers broken foot--out season

        the big issue here is depth. I had high hopes for kennedy as well. Lewis has never stayed healthy for a season and holsey isnt even healthy now. Brian Howard will get his chance to play, but we could really use another body at DT.

        general counsel

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Kennedy suffers broken foot--out season

          Shoulda never picked this DT in the first place, he was a poor choice. I had no confidence in him. He was a no-show for the most part last season. This is not a loss because he never put anything on the table.

          Now then, don't ya wish that our FO woulda kept our best DT - Young and let Kennedy earn what he deserved - the boot!

          I don't think losing him for the season is as bad as it sounds. Losing an underperforming guy ain't no real loss at all.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Kennedy suffers broken foot--out season

            Originally posted by coy bacon
            Now then, don't ya wish that our FO woulda kept our best DT - Young and let Kennedy earn what he deserved - the boot!
            No, I don't wish that. You can make a case that the Rams should have never drafted Kennedy and then should have resigned Young when his contract was up. That makes sense. , but to say that the Rams should have resigned Young last season and cut Kennedy makes no sense. The Rams would have suffered an accelerated cap hit from Kennedy's bonus money, and still would have had to fit Young's salary under the already strained cap of the time.

            I still think the Rams would have been better off trying to trade up to get Trufant. Hopefully Kennedy makes me eat those words in the near future though.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Kennedy suffers broken foot--out season

              Whether or not the Rams should have drafted a DT first last year, the injury is unfortunate (and does not prove your point, as the injury could not have been forseen).

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Kennedy suffers broken foot--out season

                Nick, I don't know about the salary stuff and you're probably right about it all, and from a financial standpoint ya gotta do what works.

                I'm just saying that this whole JK thing has been a WASTE, and I wish our FO was a bit smarter when it came to drafting him. I doubt if JK will ever produce. He's done for another year. Imagine, 2 seasons in the NFL, making a ton of cash, and all he's done is next to nothing.

                And, all things considered, the FO should have found a way to keep Young. It was a bad move to let him go. Now we only have one proven-average, underachieving DT - Pickett. The rest are fill-ins or new.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Kennedy suffers broken foot--out season

                  Originally posted by coy bacon
                  I'm just saying that this whole JK thing has been a WASTE, and I wish our FO was a bit smarter when it came to drafting him. I doubt if JK will ever produce. He's done for another year. Imagine, 2 seasons in the NFL, making a ton of cash, and all he's done is next to nothing.
                  To Kennedy's credit, he was said to be at Rams Park nearly every day in the offseason working out and seemed to be taking his job much more seriously. It's too bad that his season had to end prematurely, especially in the wake of all these positive reports, but like you said...
                  Originally posted by coy bacon
                  This is not a loss because he never put anything on the table.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Kennedy suffers broken foot--out season

                    Thats the way the cookie crumbles.

                    Reborn

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Kennedy suffers broken foot--out season

                      Originally posted by CoyBacon
                      Shoulda never picked this DT in the first place, he was a poor choice. I had no confidence in him. He was a no-show for the most part last season. This is not a loss because he never put anything on the table.
                      Originally posted by CoyBacon
                      I'm just saying that this whole JK thing has been a WASTE, and I wish our FO was a bit smarter when it came to drafting him. I doubt if JK will ever produce.
                      Here's a few more DTs that were a waste and should have been cut after their rookie year.

                      LaRoi Glover (2 tackles, 0 sacks)
                      Casey Hampton (9 tackles, 1 sack)
                      Gilbert Brown (1 tackle, 0 sacks)
                      Anthony McFarland (9 tackles, 1 sack)
                      Ryan Sims (5 tackles, 0 sacks)
                      Norman Hand (0 tackles, 0 sacks)
                      John Parella (3 tackles, 1 sack)
                      Orpheus Roye (2 tackles, 0 sacks)

                      Yea, these guys will never produce. (end of sarcasm)

                      The truth is DT is a position that takes time to produce, even more so than QB. Kennedy came in last year with false expectations and was overwhelmed with the culture shock of the NFL. Now he is injured and that is a shame. However, he has the tools, he now has the proper mindset. He will produce in this league. But it will take a little time. That doesn't help now, but we shouldn't throw the baby out with the bath water, either.
                      The more things change, the more they stay the same.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Kennedy suffers broken foot--out season

                        Bah Hubison,
                        So, you've searched and found a few guys who finally delivered. So what? We are all aware that some guys sometimes do pan out. At least you're admitting and agreeing with me that Kennedy was a bust, big time. And, can I put you down for supporting that we keep Lewis for as long as it takes?

                        Does it make sense to you to let our best DT go, while we keep the underperformers? It doesn't to me.

                        Don't give me that "overwhelmed" baloney. Any serious NFL player would have done his homework and known what he was getting into. If he allowed himself to be deceived, or was too lazy to prepare, then it only proves that he was a dud. I would think that someone going into the NFL would have gotten their head out of their butt and known it was going to be hard.

                        From what I remember last season, he showed up out of shape and had a very poor work ethic. Then he got hurt and got to collect splinters. No dice on letting him off the hook.

                        Just like Lewis and the promises.. blah blah blah. Pickett, another first rounded has been average, i.e. disappointing as well.

                        Meanwhile, we let go of our best DT - Zgonnia, and then, the next season, we let Young go, meanwhile we keep the 3 underachieving DTs. And surprize! everyone agrees that one of our biggest weaknesses is the DL.

                        Imagine, a professional org. letting its best talent go, while keeping the mediocre, probably because they don't want to lose face. Stupid if ya ask me.

                        Our FO isn't inept. I hope they do go out and find a way to get some stud DTs.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Kennedy suffers broken foot--out season

                          Coy, I'm sure you are not the only one here that wishes we could have kept Young. But do you honestly think that we could have cut one of the "underachieving" three, took the accelerated cap hit, and still been able to resign Young? Personally, I don't think so. But I'm not in the FO so I don't know. If we could have, it might have been a risk worth trying.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Kennedy suffers broken foot--out season

                            Originally posted by NickSeiler
                            I still think the Rams would have been better off trying to trade up to get Trufant. Hopefully Kennedy makes me eat those words in the near future though.
                            I just read in the last two days that Trufant is having a hard time picking things up.

                            I still think the jury is out on JK. On average, it takes 3 years for a defensive lineman to reach *it*. He did make an overhaul of his commitment, and I would like to see how that plays out next season. But he will have to make up for this year then. Next year, no performance? Bust...
                            This space for rent...

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Kennedy suffers broken foot--out season

                              Coy, we do agree on a few things.
                              At least you're admitting and agreeing with me that Kennedy was a bust, big time.
                              Agree. Certainly no rookie season to write home about.
                              I would think that someone going into the NFL would have gotten their head out of their butt and known it was going to be hard.
                              Agreed. He should have done more prep work before camp opened.
                              he showed up out of shape and had a very poor work ethic.
                              Agreed. A result of his lack of preparation.
                              Just like Lewis and the promises.. blah blah blah.
                              Agreed. Lewis was a stretch that high in the first round and we had more pressing needs.
                              Meanwhile, we let go of our best DT - Zgonnia
                              Agreed. We never should have let him go.
                              And, can I put you down for supporting that we keep Lewis for as long as it takes?
                              I am on record in other threads for saying that Lewis is at the make-or-break season, and I have never had much confidence in him.

                              Pickett, another first rounded has been average, i.e. disappointing as well.
                              Here's where we disagree. When healthy, Pickett has been very effective. He has been a very good run-stopper and has swallowed up blockers to free lanes for Arch and blitzing LBs. If he stays healthy he will anchor the middle of that line.
                              If he allowed himself to be deceived, or was too lazy to prepare, then it only proves that he was a dud.
                              I don't see how you can equate naivete with lack of potential. So he got some bad advice (from Lavar Arrington, who we see is not exactly a brainchild), that doesn't mean he is a dud. He's learned from it, and according to reports has spent a lot of time at Rams Park getting ready for this season. Now he's hurt. A setback yes, but he will recover.
                              So, you've searched and found a few guys who finally delivered. So what?
                              My point is, those are all current DT (most of which are Pro-bowlers) who could start for any team that had rookie seasons on par with Kennedy. That position is not one where guys usually produce big right out of the gate. There are exceptions, but Kennedy may just need a little time to develop. The injury will set him back, but it's not a career killer.
                              The more things change, the more they stay the same.

                              Comment

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                              • RamWraith
                                Kennedy puts best foot forward
                                by RamWraith
                                By Jim Thomas
                                Of the Post-Dispatch
                                Thursday, Nov. 11 2004

                                For Jimmy Kennedy, half a loaf is better than none. A broken foot in training
                                camp sidelined him for seven games. But after making his 2004 debut in Sunday's
                                40-22 loss to New England, he seems determined to make the most out of the
                                remainder of the season.

                                "It's always great to be back on the field," said Kennedy, the Rams'
                                first-round draft pick in 2003. "It's just tough to come out with this loss."

                                Unofficially, Kennedy was in for 25 plays at defensive tackle against the
                                Patriots, spelling starters Ryan Pickett and Damione Lewis. Kennedy dropped
                                Corey Dillon for a 1- yard loss four plays into the game, and finished with
                                three tackles.

                                Beyond the tackling stats, Kennedy got penetration on a few other plays, and he
                                displayed good hustle trying to chase down Patrick Pass from behind on a
                                19-yard run in the fourth quarter. All in all, it was a solid performance.

                                "I expected to be out there more," Kennedy said. "Ryan, D- Lew, we're all
                                first-rounders. We all want to be out there on the field. I was on the sideline
                                saying, 'Bill, let me get some action.'"

                                Bill Kollar is the team's defensive line coach.

                                "I found that when I was moving around, the foot wasn't bothering me," Kennedy
                                said. "But when I was sitting, my foot just started to relax and it was
                                starting to throb. It was hard to get the blood flowing in it again."

                                After the game, Kennedy said the foot was throbbing a little, but added, "It's
                                nothing I can't handle."

                                Coach Mike Martz liked what he saw of Kennedy against the Patriots, and what he
                                saw Wednesday and Thursday at Rams Park.

                                "This week in practice, he's been exceptional," Martz said. "It's thrilling, it
                                really is, for me to see him come from where he was last year to the point
                                where I think he is right now. I really am anxious to see him on Sunday
                                (against Seattle). ... Everything about Jimmy is moving in the right
                                direction."

                                The same couldn't be said at this time last year. At the end of last season,
                                Martz questioned Kennedy's commitment to becoming a good NFL player. He said
                                Kennedy had a lot of growing up to do.

                                For the most part, Kennedy put in the time last offseason in terms of weight
                                training and conditioning. Following the foot injury, which occurred Aug. 5 in
                                a joint practice session with the Chicago Bears, Kennedy got up close and
                                personal with strength and conditioning coach Dana LeDuc.

                                "I'd rather be on the field than in the weight room with 'Duke,' " Kennedy...
                                -11-12-2004, 05:29 AM
                              • RamWraith
                                Kennedy puts best foot forward
                                by RamWraith
                                By Jim Thomas
                                Of the Post-Dispatch
                                Sunday, Aug. 07 2005

                                Nearly a year ago to the day, on Aug. 5, 2004, Rams defensive tackle Jimmy
                                Kennedy planted during a practice drill against the Chicago Bears, made a cut
                                and felt something pop.

                                Kennedy, the No. 12 overall draft pick in 2003, had fractured the fifth
                                metatarsal in his right foot. After a disappointing rookie season, it looked
                                like Year 2 was down the tubes as well and that Kennedy was on his way to being
                                a first-round bust.

                                Surprisingly, Kennedy now says that the foot injury was "good for me."

                                In fact, he added: "I think that's the best thing that ever happened to me
                                since I've been a Ram, is me breaking my foot."

                                Huh?

                                "It allowed all the attention to be on me," Kennedy said. "And I needed that.
                                In terms of rehab, it allowed the coaches to say, 'Damn, this dude really
                                works.' Because when you come out of college, you get labeled."

                                For Kennedy, that label included having weight problems, not always running to
                                the ball, and being something less than a workout warrior.

                                In Kennedy's mind, it wasn't a case of him suddenly discovering the weight
                                room. He claims his upper body strength was always there - it's just that Rams
                                coaches simply noticed it once he was sidelined.

                                "You just don't start going in the weight room and throwing up X amount of
                                weights with reps," Kennedy said. "You've got to work up to that over years.
                                You know what I'm saying?"

                                At the time of the injury, the Rams considered putting Kennedy on the injured
                                reserve list, which would have ended his season. In fact, Kennedy wanted to go
                                on injured reserve after seeing Jason Sehorn struggle to come back from a
                                similar injury.

                                "Coach (Mike) Martz said, 'No, we want you to play (in '04),'" Kennedy said.
                                "It's something I had to fight through."

                                Turns out Kennedy missed only the first seven games of 2004. Despite
                                experiencing soreness in the foot, he played well enough to start the Rams'
                                final five regular-season contests.

                                "It just really worked out good that we didn't put him on IR," defensive line
                                coach Bill Kollar said. "When he came back off of that injury is when he really
                                started to turn the corner."

                                The momentum gained by playing the second half of last season, coupled with a
                                strong offseason in the weight room, has Kennedy poised for a breakthrough
                                campaign in 2005.

                                "It's probably the most dramatic change in any football player that I've ever
                                been around in one year," Martz said. "From...
                                -08-08-2005, 05:01 AM
                              • RamWraith
                                Kennedy Cleared to Begin Running
                                by RamWraith
                                Rams | Kennedy Cleared to Begin Running - from www.KFFL.com
                                Thu, 30 Sep 2004 16:45:17 -0700

                                St. Louis Rams DT Jimmy Kennedy (foot) has been given clearance to begin some running. Kennedy is still several weeks away from playing, but the clearance is a major step in getting back on the practice field.
                                -10-01-2004, 05:23 AM
                              • VegasRam
                                Waggoner on Kennedy - 7/30
                                by VegasRam
                                By Nick Wagoner
                                Senior Writer wrote:
                                Kennedy Poised for Breakout
                                Saturday, July 30, 2005



                                When Jimmy Kennedy arrived in St. Louis in 2003, he came with a confident swagger, the kind of attitude of a player ready to make a difference on the Rams’ defensive line.

                                Well, those plans didn’t exactly go accordingly. Kennedy played in 13 games, making just 10 tackles. He wasn’t in good playing condition and his production reflected it. Simply put, Kennedy wasn’t ready for the rigors of the NFL and he didn’t know how to put in the work to get there.

                                Coming out of Penn State, it was easy for a player of Kennedy’s stature to stand up and talk about his ability, but with his poor performance on the field, that confident swagger turned into a lifeless reticence.

                                Along with Kennedy’s loss of confidence, the coaching staff also lost confidence in him. Kennedy went into a shell, barely speaking with the media and wondering about his future in the NFL.

                                Oh how far he has come. No, Kennedy hasn’t earned a Pro Bowl berth or any other honors, but the confidence is back and Kennedy is clearly one of the most improved players on the field.

                                “Last year I was more nervous (entering camp),” Kennedy said. “But this year, after offseason was over, I just put my hand in the dirt and said ‘Who can stop me?’

                                “It’s going to happen, especially out there in practice because I see those guys in practice every day. It’s about how you bounce back from that after a loss, after you go out there and beat somebody, you can’t let your head go into the clouds and think I have arrived because I haven’t. I have a long way to go.”

                                The turning point for Kennedy’s resurrection is easy to find. After a somewhat difficult start to last year’s camp, he broke his foot and was left to face another setback. Kennedy had put in some work in the weight room in hopes of bouncing back from his difficult rookie season, but the foot injury could easily have been the last straw.

                                The injury forced Kennedy to make a decision about his future, not just for the season, but also for his career.

                                “When I broke my foot it allowed me to say ‘if this is over, would I be happy with my career,” Kennedy said. “I wouldn’t be satisfied with that. Also, it allowed the coaches to see how hard I worked. When I broke my foot, (strength coach) Dana LeDuc was seeing how hard I worked in the weight room. Coach Martz and those guys saw how hard I was working on getting back. Right now I am just a different player because I have the coaching staff as well as my teammates backing me up.”

                                Kennedy did indeed choose to get back to work in an effort to become the type of player he and the Rams believed he was coming out of college. Though he couldn’t participate in drills or play for most of the season, Kennedy focused his efforts on the weight room.
                                ...
                                -07-30-2005, 01:43 PM
                              • general counsel
                                Kennedy, an enigma wrapped inside a riddle
                                by general counsel
                                How bad do you have to be, both physically and attitude wise, to lose your job to the nutcracker. Lewis is so bad out there it is really beyond description and yet kennedy is on the bench. Something is going on for sure, i wish i knew what.

                                Kennedy is a key guy for us. We need him to step up and develop. He has shown flashed, but zero consistency.

                                As the debacle at defensive tackle continues, god knows where we would be without pickett. he MUST be resigned.

                                ramming speed to all

                                general counsel
                                -11-27-2005, 03:40 PM
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