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Kyle Boller Still Has Soreness In Thigh

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  • Kyle Boller Still Has Soreness In Thigh

    Kyle Boller still has soreness in thigh
    By Bill Coats

    Perhaps the Rams were fortunate that kickoff for Sunday's game at Tennessee was moved back to 3:05 p.m. under the NFL flex-scheduling program. Quarterback Kyle Boller apparently will need as much time as possible to heal his sore thigh.

    "I feel all right," Boller said after seeing limited action at practice Friday. "We still have 48 hours till the game. ... I'm not going to jeopardize the team if I'm not ready. I just feel like the progress I've made since yesterday is good. ... I don't think it should be a problem."

    Boller was hurt last Sunday in the 17-9 loss at Chicago. He went through a full practice Wednesday but woke up sore Thursday. "It set him back a little bit," coach Steve Spagnuolo said. "We're trying not to go backward."

    Spagnuolo decreased Boller's reps significantly Thursday and Friday. Backing off with Boller meant ramping up with rookie Keith Null, who moved up to No. 2 when starter Marc Bulger was injured three weeks ago. Null, who had been running the scout-team offense, got his most extensive work with the first team all season.

    "It's definitely good to get in, call our plays, run our plays and get some experience; it helps a ton," said Null, a sixth-round draft pick from NCAA Division II West Texas A&M. "It's one thing to watch and say the play while you're standing back, and it's another thing to actually get in the huddle, call it and then run that play."

    Even if Boller starts vs. the Titans, as is fully expected, another shot to his leg could shove Null into his first regular-season action. "I have to be ready for anything," he said. "Being the backup, now you're only one play away."

    Null, who played in a spread offense in college, has made considerable progress since the spring, Spagnuolo reported.

    "He looks more comfortable, I guess is the best way to say it," Spagnuolo said. "I can remember back in (organized team activities) when taking a snap was a little bit different for him. So he's come a long way."


    Rookie Jason Smith, still experiencing the effects of a concussion, has been ruled out of a third consecutive game. Veteran Adam Goldberg will start again at right tackle.

    Running back Steven Jackson (back) participated in a handful of plays in the early "install" period, then sat out the rest of practice. For the third Friday in a row, he was listed as questionable on the injury report.

    Fullback Mike Karney (neck) and defensive tackle LaJuan Ramsey (wrist) also were questionable. Probables were Boller, wide receivers Donnie Avery (shoulder) and Brandon Gibson (ankle), linebacker James Laurinaitis (shoulder) and defensive tackle Darell Scott (neck).

    For the Titans, quarterback Vince Young (knee) was questionable, and running back Chris Johnson (ankle), the NFL's leading rusher, was probable.


    In a statistical oddity, Rams punter Donnie Jones had a better net average (45.7 yards) than gross average (45.3) against the Bears. Only one punt of his punts was fielded, and Devin Hester lost 3 yards on the return.

    "I think that was a first" in his six seasons, Jones said. "That's a credit to the guys covering. I can only do so much. Those guys, they go out and play hard every week. They've done an excellent job all year."


    Asked how the Rams would try to contain Johnson, Spagnuolo quipped, "Oh, man ... get 12 guys on the field?" ... The Rams and Titans, foes in the 2000 Super Bowl, haven't met in the regular season since 2005. ... Jeff Fisher, in his 15th season at Tennessee, is the league's longest-tenured head coach.

Related Topics


  • r8rh8rmike
    With Boller Gimpy, "Excited" Null Gets More Work
    by r8rh8rmike
    12.11.2009 2:29 pm
    With Boller gimpy, “excited” Null gets more work
    By Bill Coats
    St. Louis Post-Dispatch

    Heading into his third Sunday as the St. Louis Rams’ backup quarterback, rookie Keith Null acknowledged his excitement. “It is exciting as the No. 2, being prepared, getting some reps in practice and have a little confidence as you go in,” said Null, who has been No. 3 behind Marc Bulger and Kyle Boller most of the season.

    Bulger (leg) will miss his third game in a row when the Rams take on the Titans in Nashville (kickoff is at 3:05 p.m.). Boller is expected to start again, although the sore thigh that he’s been nursing this week has added a bit of suspense to the situation.

    After a full practice Wednesday, Boller was sore Thursday. So his reps Thursday and today were decreased, and Null’s were increased. Coach Steve Spagnuolo said after practice today that Boller should be ready to go.

    “It’s a little bit better today, but not as good as we really want it to be,” Spagnuolo said. “We’ve got 48 hours, so we’ll see. I don’t want to look in a crystal ball. You’ve got to play with two legs, can’t play with one.”

    Of course, Null doesn’t want to play at Boller’s expense. But he said he’d love to see some action, perhaps late in a game. “I think any time you can get in as a backup and get some experience, it’s definitely beneficial,” he said. “I would take that opportunity, for sure.”

    Notes & quotes:

    *RB Steven Jackson (back) participated in several plays during the early “install” period at practice but didn’t do anything else on the field.

    *T Jason Smith (concussion) has been ruled out for Sunday’s game.

    *These players were limited today: Boller, WR Brandon Gibson (ankle), LB James Laurinaitis (shoulder), DT Darell Scott (neck), WR Donnie Avery (shoulder) and FB Mike Karney (neck).

    *Asked how the Rams hoped to contain Titans RB Chris Johnson, the NFL’s leading rusher, Spagnuolo quipped, “Oh, man . . . get 12 guys on the field?”
    -12-11-2009, 04:42 PM
  • r8rh8rmike
    Backup QB Boller Aims To Eliminate Mistakes
    by r8rh8rmike
    Backup QB Boller aims to eliminate mistakes
    By R.B. FALLSTROM, AP Sports Writer
    4 hours, 43 minutes ago

    ST. LOUIS (AP)—If Kyle Boller is auditioning for a new deal with the St. Louis Rams, he has yet to impress.

    The backup quarterback is getting extended playing opportunity, perhaps the rest of the season, given that Marc Bulger(notes) is on crutches with a fractured left shin bone. But Boller realizes the game-changing mistakes that have marred his play must be weeded out.

    Boller threw two interceptions last week, including one on a tipped pass that was returned for the go-ahead touchdown in last weekend’s 27-17 loss to the Seahawks, and is responsible for seven turnovers in only 14 quarters. His other pick Sunday was in the end zone, negating a scoring opportunity.

    “I wish a ball would pop 10 feet in the air and hit the guy in stride for a touchdown,” Boller said Wednesday. “That’s the way it goes. You have to protect the ball but I’m still going to go out there and try to make plays.”

    Boller, who landed with a one-year free agent contract after sitting out 2008 with a shoulder injury in Baltimore, isn’t going to change. Despite the mounting mistakes, he said there’s no way he’ll go conservative this weekend at Chicago when he makes his second straight start.

    “I’m not going to play scared, that’s when you do turn the ball over,” he said. “I don’t foresee that being a problem.”

    The Rams (1-10) pretty much have to count on Boller improving, since rookie Keith Null is the only other quarterback on the roster. Coach Steve Spagnuolo doesn’t believe Null, a sixth-round pick, is ready and would just as soon he not play this season.

    “I’m sure if you ask Kyle, certainly the second one, he’d like to have a better throw,” Spagnuolo said of the interceptions by Seattle. “I know Kyle would like to have both of them back.”

    The coach has been able to say that a lot. Four of Boller’s turnovers have been returned for touchdowns, and two came in the red zone.

    Of course, it’s not all the quarterback’s fault. The Rams have been inexperienced at wide receiver all season and the offensive line was minus three starters much of the game against Seattle. Boller was constantly on the run and was sacked four times, so he’s had to work through more than the usual soreness.

    “Sometimes your best throws are when you get hit and you lay on the ground and hopefully they’re applauding when you play at home,” Boller said. “It was a little harder this week, definitely.”

    Center Jason Brown is expected to make his 56th consecutive start, although he grudgingly missed the first practice of his career on Wednesday with a sprained right knee.

    “It’s a humbling experience,” Brown said. “I did not want to miss this practice, not at all, but it’s all about doing the smart thing.”...
    -12-02-2009, 08:04 PM
  • r8rh8rmike
    Despite Setback, Boller Would Like To Return Here In 2010
    by r8rh8rmike
    12.30.2009 4:55 pm
    Despite setback, Boller would like to return here in 2010
    By Bill Coats
    St. Louis Post-Dispatch

    When quarterback Marc Bulger fractured his shinbone Nov. 22 vs. Arizona, it looked as if veteran Kyle Boller would have the final six games to try to prove his future value to the St. Louis Rams. But Boller injured his thigh two weeks later, then was leveled by illness.

    In the meantime, rookie Keith Null stepped in. He started the last three games and likely will be in the lineup again Sunday, when the Rams close the season against the ***** at the Edward Jones Dome.

    Boller can only wonder what might have been.

    “Any time you have an injury or an illness and you’re taken out of the position, somebody else has an opportunity to get in there,” Boller noted. “It’s unfortunate that that happened to me. I’m going to have to deal with that, and hopefully work my way back.”

    He’d like to do that in St. Louis, he stressed. “I like this organization, I like the guys on my team,” he said. “It’s a great town, and I really see this team doing good things. I would love to.”

    Notes & quotes:

    *RB Steven Jackson (back), CB Quincy Butler (knee, ankle), LB Paris Lenon (toe), DE Leonard Little (knee) and G Mark Setterstrom (triceps) sat out practice Wednesday. Setterstrom will have surgery “in the near future,” coach Steve Spagnuolo reported.

    *T Jason Smith (concussion), LB James Laurinaitis (knee) and WR Donnie Avery (thigh) were limited.

    *Spagnuolo doubled his usual contigent of captains, naming six for this week: Jackson and T Adam Goldberg, offense; Little and Laurinaitis, defense; and K Josh Brown and P Donnie Jones, special teams.

    *The Rams filled the open spot on their practice squad by signing G Mark Lewis, an undrafted rookie from Oregon.

    *Spagnuolo, on Jackson’s selection to the Pro Bowl: “Very excited, happy for him, proud of him. Excited for the whole offense, really. He’s just a class guy. I always felt that he was that caliber of player, and I’m glad that the rest of the league, the fans and the people that voted, recognized him as such.”
    -12-31-2009, 12:01 AM
  • r8rh8rmike
    St. Louis Rams' Marc Bulger Is Out, Kyle Boller Steps In
    by r8rh8rmike
    St. Louis Rams' Marc Bulger is out, Kyle Boller steps in


    Life as a backup quarterback means you're always one play away from the spotlight. For Kyle Boller, that play took place Monday at Rams Park.

    With the Rams working indoors because of rain, a center snap from Jason Brown doinked off the hands of quarterback Marc Bulger midway through practice. X-rays subsequently showed that Bulger had suffered a fractured pinky finger on his throwing hand. The two-time Pro Bowler will be sidelined at least two weeks.

    "It kind of — not really popped — but I could tell he was hurting a little bit," Boller said. "He kind of stuck in there and went for a couple more (plays)."

    But then Bulger headed off the practice field, and the next thing Boller knew, coach Steve Spagnuolo was in his ear.

    "He said, 'You've got to go in right now,'" Boller said.

    Boller took the rest of the practice reps with the starters in the morning, and took the full load with the first team in the afternoon.

    During a situational goal-line period in the morning, Spagnuolo said Boller "pretty much did all the right things." And in the 7-on-7 passing period, "he stuck out," the coach said.


    "Nah. You can't be nervous," Boller said. "That's part of the deal of being a backup. You've got to just be prepared to jump in there no matter the situation.

    "It's not my first rodeo. I've been a starter. I've been out there. So I'm just going to go out there and be myself. Be a leader, and lead this team to hopefully a lot of scoring drives."

    The No. 19 overall pick by Baltimore in 2003, Boller appeared in 53 games with 42 starts for the Ravens. He's that franchise's career leader in passing yards (7,846) but threw 44 interceptions to go with his 46 touchdown passes.

    Last year in the Ravens' second exhibition game, a season-ending shoulder injury to Boller opened the door for rookie Joe Flacco at quarterback. Flacco nearly got the Ravens into the Super Bowl; Boller became expendable as an unrestricted free agent.

    He signed a one-year, $1.5 million deal with St. Louis, but only after the Rams got tired of waiting on Gus Frerotte. So Boller, 28, will start Friday against Atlanta, as well as the Rams' Aug. 27 contest at Cincinnati. But that should be it, unless Bulger's injury takes longer to heal than expected.

    "There's what I'm going to call a small fracture in the pinky finger," Spagnuolo said. "It's not displaced, which is a good thing. ... You can't cast it. You don't do anything to it. He'll just tape it. We'll keep it immobilized for a couple of weeks, and we'll see where we are after that. He won't do very much for two...
    -08-17-2009, 09:33 PM
  • Bralidore(RAMMODE)
    Rams Leaning Towards Boller Now?
    by Bralidore(RAMMODE)
    "All week it's looked as though the St. Louis Rams would start rookie QB Keith Null against the Cardinals, but now Fox Sports is reporting that the team is leaning toward starting Kyle Boller, citing concern over the leaky protection offered by the offensive line. Last week, the offensive line, missing three starters, allowed three sacks against the Texans, who have just five more sacks on the season than the Rams. Arizona on the other hand has 38 sacks on the season, the fourth most in the league. So protecting Null from his own line is a valid concern, especially with LT Alex Barron lapsing into his old habits lately. Of course, it's kind of like avoiding sending your child out into the world for fear they'll get hornswaggled by someone calling themselves the "wallet inspector;" they have to learn to deal reality sometime.
    Here's my two cents on why they should start Null. The Rams played with real passion last week, before ultimately being outmatched, but they were a much better team. Do not adjust the chemistry. There's more to it than just Null, but I think his play has been a big part of it. Formula's are complex and adjusting one seemingly little element of it throws the whole thing out of whack.
    After the Null/Boller question, the next pressing issue will be what happens with CB Jonathan Wade. He was the starter along side Ron Bartell when the season began, but was quickly replaced by an emerging Bradley Fletcher. When Fletcher was injured Wade still sat, being replaced by a combination of Justin King and Quincy Butler. Now with Quincy Butler out for the season will Wade get some playing time or will King get more and Cord Parks, recently added to the roster, get more time in Wade's stead? Stay tuned for the battle of the third string cornerbacks!!"--Turf Show Times
    -12-27-2009, 10:04 AM