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Turley remains out of camp with bad back

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  • Turley remains out of camp with bad back

    Turley remains out of camp with bad back
    By Bill Coats
    Of the Post-Dispatch

    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 scrimmage with the Chicago Bears.

    Returning to action were cornerbacks Jerametrius Butler and Travis Fisher; defensive ends Leonard Little, Anthony Hargrove, Sean Moran and Erik Flowers; linebacker Brandon Chillar; and safety Tom Knight.

    "The first two weeks, we really went hard," Martz noted. "And now we're going to let them get back a little bit, have a good couple of days here and get ready to go play the Bears" on Thursday at the Edward Jones Dome in the exhibition opener.

    Hargrove, the team's third-round draft pick, said the swelling in his knee and ankle that kept him out for several days was "a hard thing for me. ... I was miserable. I tweaked it a little bit again in one-on-ones (Monday), and they told me to sit out. But I couldn't - I really wanted to get in there and see what I could do."

    Keeping the Rams Nation Talking

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  • Nick
    Turley reinjures his back
    by Nick
    Tackle undergoing tests on back
    Associated Press

    MACOMB, Ill. - St. Louis Rams offensive tackle Kyle Turley reinjured his surgically repaired back in practice Saturday and the team scheduled tests to determine the extent of the problem.

    The team characterized the injury as a strain and tests were done at training camp rather than having Turley return to St. Louis. Turley, who left the field on a cart during the morning practice, has been trying to build his strength and regain pounds lost since the surgery and he had been seeing limited action in workouts.

    On Tuesday, the day Rams players reported to training camp, Martz downplayed doubts about Turley's readiness.

    "He looks like he's in terrific shape," Martz said then. "There's no reason why he won't be 100 percent in camp."

    Last year was Turley's first with the Rams and he started all 16 games.

    A few other players also are dealing with back issues. Defensive tackle Jimmy Kennedy, the team's first-round pick last year, rode a stationary bicycle during both practices and safety Rich Coady and offensive guard Ryan Schau were out.

    Other minor injuries were sustained by linebacker Tommy Polley (sprained toe) and tight end Cam Cleeland (hamstring).

    Aside from Turley, Martz didn't appear overly concerned about any of the other players.

    "Unless it's a real serious injury, I just don't pay a heck of a lot of attention to it," Martz said. "Whoever shows up, we're going to practice and there's nothing you can do about the rest of the guys.

    "When you get them back, you get them back."
    -07-31-2004, 07:39 PM
  • RamWraith
    Turley leaves camp to get ailing back checked
    by RamWraith
    By Jim Thomas
    Of the Post-Dispatch
    MACOMB, Ill. - A disappointed and frustrated Kyle Turley headed back to St. Louis on Sunday for further tests and evaluation of a back problem that doesn't seem to want to go away.

    Meanwhile, the Rams are bringing in reinforcements for an offensive line that has been short-handed since the start of training camp. Offensive tackle Greg Randall arrived in Macomb early Sunday evening for a physical, and later was signed to a one-year contract. He is on the practice field this morning.

    Randall started 16 games for the Houston Texans last year. He played his first three seasons in the NFL for the New England Patriots, and started at right tackle in Super Bowl XXXVI against the Rams.

    The Rams also were attempting to bring in guard-center Chris Dishman, the former Arizona Cardinal, to help their depth on the interior of the line. But as of Sunday evening, the Rams had been unable to contact Dishman, causing some team officials to wonder if he was still interested in playing.

    Before heading to St. Louis, Turley told reporters that he considered the latest setback career threatening.

    "It was a threat to my career last year," Turley said. "But for it to have possibly reoccurred is definitely a bigger threat."

    Turley experienced nagging pain in his hip last season. After the season, the source of the pain was diagnosed as a herniated disk in his lower back, and Turley underwent surgery in March.

    Coach Mike Martz pronounced Turley fit at the outset of camp, but Turley has practiced only about half the time over the first five days here at Western Illinois University because of back pain.

    "I came out here in hopes of everything being OK," Turley said. "And everything kind of felt fine. But I went through the first day of practice, and it didn't seem like it was completely right.

    "I expressed my feelings about it. The idea was to come back out and see how it goes. We did it, and I don't know if that was necessarily the right thing to do."

    In addition to getting checked out in St. Louis, Turley said he might see a specialist in Los Angeles.

    "We're attacking it right now, with some heavy anti-inflammatories," he said. "And we're going to see these people and see what they have to say."

    Turley had an MRI Saturday in Macomb and termed the results "not good."

    Turley added, "I'm not doing the surgery again. I'm not going through that again."

    With or without surgery, Turley is concerned that any additional deterioration of the disk won't leave much cushion between the vertebrae.

    "The biggest fear is bone on bone," Turley said. "I don't want that to happen and be a hunchback...
    -08-02-2004, 07:52 AM
  • Nick
    Turley takes a parting shot at Martz
    by Nick
    Getting defensive
    Turley wants to bring his intensity to DE position
    Posted: Friday June 10, 2005 1:25PM;
    Updated: Friday June 10, 2005 3:29PM

    He was on his way to a gig, getting jacked up for a couple hours of shirtless skins-slapping -- and when you are the drummer for a band named Perpetual Death Mode, your biceps had best be prepared to do some serious throbbing.

    "Oh, I'm gonna pound those things," Kyle Turley said in his typical, subtlety-deprived tone. "Our music is super heavy, super hard and super fast. It's bad-ass, man. And yeah, I've gotta take the shirt off, so I can show off my f---- abs."

    Turley has been part of this death-metal-thrash quartet for several weeks now, and in case you're working up the courage to tell this long-haired, heavily tattooed rhythm-keeper to keep his day job, don't bother: Turley officially lost it on Monday, when the St. Louis Rams waived the former All-Pro tackle after he failed a physical.

    Still ailing from the serious back injury that kept him out for all of the 2004 season, the 6-foot-5 Turley at one point shrunk down to 235 pounds during rehab, a process he says is still three to six months away from completion. He has since bulked up to 260 ("I've put on 30 pounds of solid muscle," he said) -- 50 pounds short of his listed weight going into '04, but buff enough to allow him to switch to defensive end, which would be quite a dramatic move for the soon-to-be-30-year-old.

    "With my intensity and athletic ability, I think that would be a natural switch," Turley said in a phone interview on Thursday night. "I'm just as fast as almost all those [defensive ends] out there, and as athletic, or more, than half of them. And my tenacity supersedes all of that. There are a lot of guys at that position who have gotten paid that are a bunch of slaps, and I know I could do better than them."

    If Turley seems a tad disdainful of his would-be peers, some back story is in order. As part of a 2003 Sports Illustrated package on offensive linemen -- for which he was the cover subject -- Turley told Josh Elliott he regarded his defensive-line counterparts as unintelligent drones, referring to them as "geraniums."

    Now that he's intent on a switch, Turley is all about flower power.

    "Because I played offensive line, I think that gives me an insider's advantage," he explained. "Believe me, I know what's happening on the other side of the football, and that should allow me to read and react in a way that the typical defensive lineman can't. I know what I would bring to that position, and a lot of coaches know, too."

    What Turley would bring, first and foremost, is attitude -- which is why, despite his physical issues and purported baggage, I expect some NFL team to give him a chance. This is likely...
    -06-10-2005, 03:29 PM
  • RamWraith
    Turley goes on IR, is out for season
    by RamWraith
    By Bill Coats
    Of the Post-Dispatch
    Saturday, Aug. 28 2004

    A veteran offensive tackle made news Saturday at Rams Park. But, no, it wasn't
    Orlando Pace, whose arrival is expected soon but hasn't taken place just yet.

    The report involved Kyle Turley, and it actually only made the inevitable
    official: Rams coach Mike Martz announced that Turley had been placed on the
    injured reserve list, meaning that he'll be sidelined for the season.

    Turley, a seven-year NFL veteran, underwent surgery in March for a bulging disc
    in his back. He sat out team drills at minicamp in May but participated fully
    when training camp workouts began July 28 at Western Illinois University. After
    three days of practice, Turley felt pain in the same area and soon thereafter
    left Macomb, Ill., for tests.

    His agent, Tom Condon, told the Post-Dispatch last week that Turley "herniated
    the same disc, and he's got a bulging disc above that. It's just a matter of
    what you do about it." Turley was obtained in a March 2003 trade with New
    Orleans and he was signed to a six-year, $30 million contract. The Rams gave up
    a second-round pick in this year's draft as part of that deal.

    Turley will count $2.36 million against the salary cap this year.

    A somewhat tight-lipped Martz said Saturday that he didn't know what Turley,
    28, might do about his back. "I talked to Kyle today, and he was very vague
    about his plans," Martz said. When asked whether Turley's loss would be a blow
    to the offensive line, Martz said simply, "I'm happy with the guys we have."

    Grant Williams, a nine-year veteran who has been filling in for Pace at left
    tackle, probably will slide over to Turley's spot on the right side once Pace
    shows up. Although Martz said Williams "had his best game so far" Friday night
    in a 28-3 victory over Washington, he could face a challenge from Scott
    Tercero, who has had a strong preseason at right tackle.

    Andy McCollum is set at center, as is Adam Timmerman at right guard. Chris
    Dishman, a free agent signed during camp, apparently has nailed down the left
    guard job.

    Loyd goes down

    Joining Turley on injured reserve is linebacker Jeremy Loyd, who suffered a
    torn pectoral tendon Friday night on a special-teams play. Martz said that Loyd
    would have surgery and that rehabilitation would take three to four months.

    Rams make cuts

    Six players were released Saturday: tight end Nick Burley, wide receiver
    Michael Coleman, cornerback Robert Cromartie, quarterback Russ Michna,
    defensive tackle Justin Montgomery and cornerback Corey Yates.
    -08-29-2004, 08:29 AM
  • thoey
    Turley and Martz Confrontation
    by thoey
    NFL security has questioned Rams coach Mike Martz and offensive tackle Kyle Turley over an incident where Turley allegedly threatened to kill Martz, ESPN's Chris Mortensen has learned.

    Tuesday, December 28, 2004 news services
    NFL security has questioned Rams coach Mike Martz and offensive tackle Kyle Turley over an incident where Turley allegedly threatened to kill Martz, ESPN's Chris Mortensen has learned.

    Martz and Turley allegedly engaged in a shouting match which resulted in Martz filing a report with NFL Security regarding the death threat, Mortensen is reporting.

    The argument began when Turley heard that Martz questioned the tackle's dedication to rehabbing his injured back and decided to confront the coach, Mortensen reports. Turley is on injured reserve after re-injuring his surgically repaired back early in training camp.

    For his part, Turley denies having threatened Martz. And on Tuesday evening, Martz issued a written statement through his agent, Frank Bauer, denying the report of a confrontation with Turley. "This story is absurd. It is offensive to Kyle Turley and Mike Martz. There is no truth to this story."

    Despite missing the entire season with back woes, Turley has said he wants to return for the 2005 season. The seven-year veteran, who has ruled out a second surgery to correct his back problem, has no plans for now of retiring.

    "Wanting to play has never been an issue," Turley said earlier this month. "I've given everything to this sport and dedicated myself to this, I think, as much, or in some cases more so, than most people. That's been the goal from Day One, to get back. To get back on the field."

    From the time his back began to flare up again early in training camp this summer, Turley insisted he would retire rather than face another surgery. He said doctors have apprised him that, with proper posture, increased core strength and additional flexibility, his back in time will compensate for the disc problem.

    How long that process will take, however, is not certain. Turley's goal is to be in camp but that aim might not be a realistic one.

    "But if it takes [until] the middle of next season, then so be it," he said. "Or if it takes even the year after that, I'm going to make it back. I'm 29 years old. There's time. I'm going to make it back and play in the league."

    Information from's Len Pasquarelli was used in this report
    -12-28-2004, 09:23 PM