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  • Jim Thomas Live - Aug. 31

    Jim Thomas Live
    Tuesday, August 31, 2010


    ramfandan: Hi Jim,
    I know the Rams are now in the southeast corner locker room at the Dome.
    Heard that one was refurbished for the team and the visiting teams now have the former one in the northeast corner.
    Have you seen the new one ? If so, any details ?
    Jim Thomas: Been in the new one after the Minnesota preseason opener. Wasn't done there all that long but it was nice and very spacious.

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    gdarby: Hi Jim,

    Thanks for the chat!

    1. In order, Robinson,Amendola,Gilyard,Gibson,Alexander, with Kent and Gibson on the border line...does that look like the possible depth chart at WR?
    2. Vincent Jackson to the Rams? over/under on it happening?
    Jim Thomas: 1.) Robinson, Amendola, Gilyard look like the top three. Followed by Gibson and Burton in some order. And then I guess Kent. That makes six, but the Rams may only keep five. I kind of see Alexander on the practice squad. He's way behind and probably not 100 percent.

    2.) Don't see it happening.

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    CROMWELL21: Hi Mr. Thomas:

    Why the Hall Davis trade? Was he that bad? Seems like we traded a player of need for a depth player that was about to be cut and who we could claim on waivers any way? Why give up a conditional pick? Seems like a wasted pick on Davis and another on Morris?
    Jim Thomas: In my mind, when they were all healthy, I had Davis rated third behind the other two rookie DEs, Selvie and Sims. He didn't do much on the practice field. I know he had the two sacks against Cleveland. But made a lot of mental errors.

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    bradfordok1: Jim,

    With Kroenke taking over, will he find a solution to the stadium issue and will the Rams be in St. Louis after the 2014 season?
    Jim Thomas: Well, that's the issue. And it's a question none of us can answer for certain. You can never say never. But I do think Kroenke seems committed to keeping the team in St. Louis, but he's also a shrewd businessman.

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    NORCAL-RAM, HELLO JIM: WITH THE LOSS OF DONNIE AVERY, DO YOU THINK THE RAMS HAVE ANY INTEREST IN TRY TO GET VINCENT JACKSON FROM SAN DIEGO, HE WOULD MAKE A GREAT TARGET FOR SAM BRADFORD AND IT WOULD OPEN UP THE PASSING GAME ALSO WHAT IS YOUR TAKE ON THE TRADE OF HALL DAVIS FOR DENNIS MORRIS, DO YOU THINK MORRIS MAKES THE 53 MAN ROSTER?
    Jim Thomas: For one, isn't Jackson serving a league suspension for the first 3 games of the season? So even if you got him, you're not going to see him until October. Sure he would help the passing game, but who knows how much it would take to get him _ both in terms of a trade and money.
    I don't think Davis was going to make the team, and the Rams get to look at Morris. I doubt he makes the final 53.

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    holt_lankford: JT, Thanks for the chats. I have a few questions....

    1. How has Danario Alexander looked? Does he really have a shot to make this team? With his knees and that turf, just doesn't seem to match. Also coming out of college some negatives were he lacks seperation skills and has a really tough time beating the jam. Have you noticed the same? Any chance we see him Thursday?

    2. It's obvious the Rams backup running back is not currently in the organization. There are two players I have my eyes on, Tyrell Sutton and Mike Goodson, both play for Carolina. I figured both are fighting for that 3rd RB spot on Carolina's roster and the other one will be cut. Mike Goodson has always been an underrated player, even his time at Texas A&M, he is a very good back and would be a tremendous addition to the team. Tyrell Sutton is a guy I've liked ever since he ran all over Mizzou a few years ago in their bowl game against Northwestern, his 1st game coming back from injury after like a 2-month injury time off. ANY chance the Rams are interested in either of them? I know they have their eyes open, just hope they're not looking in the wrong direction....Justin Fargas, Willie Parker = wrong direction.
    Jim Thomas: 1.) Danario just completed only his fifth practice with the team Tuesday. He looked rusty at first, but I think he's startling to settle in. At first he wasn't getting a lot of reps, and when he did, he wasn't getting the ball thrown him much. But that's staring to change now. He's made a couple of nice catches on the practice field, but has dropped a couple as well. Physically, he looks OK. And it looks like he's getting off the jam OK. Don't know if he plays Thursday. Maybe late.
    2.) I think Sutton would be a nice pickup.


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    Telephun: Hey
    Suddenly everybody is speaking about the Rams number of wins this year and it seems that most are leaning between 4 and 6 wins. What are your thoughts about this team who struggled to get one last year? Where do you see improvements on this team beside Sam Bradford?
    Jim Thomas: The Rams absolutely, positively have to stay healthy. Because Steven Jackson remains a great back, and the offensive line _ although it has some talent and potential _ is very young a tackle. I think the young TEs Hoomanawanui and Onobun could end up being pretty good. It's still hard to get a read on the defense. Do they have enough at cornerback? Can they get any kind of consistent pass rush from the front four? I do think they will play the run at least somewhat better this year.

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    Rich: Greetings Mr. Thomas,

    With cut down day looming, some hard decisions are going to be made in Rams Park.

    A lot of the focus has been on the WR corp, particularly after Avery's season ending injury. However, I would argue there is going to as much angst over who to keep in the secondary.

    Four of the best Ram DBs are either currently injured (Butler) or coming off injuries (Bartell, Fletcher, and Atogwe).

    Thus, I can see the Rams holding on to an extra DB or two above the normal compliment as insurance. Which means they are going to have to go thin somewhere else.

    Thanks again for these chats.
    Jim Thomas: Bartell and Atogwe look fine. Fletcher has looked surprisingly sharp. James Butler, I'd say is 40-60 that he's going to be ready for opening day. But Dahl is more than capable. Now some years, the Rams have kept only nine DBs, but this could be a year where they open the season with 10 _ 6 corners and 4 safeties.

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    virginiatom: It looks like Lawrence Maroney is on the way out in New England. Does he have enough left to serve as a back up to Steven Jackson? Also Hall Davis had 3 sacks in the pre-season, far exceeding any one else on the team. Why was he dealt for the Redskins for a fullback who by all accounts was not having a good camp and "didn't impress" since being drafted? And do the Rams really need another fullback? It seems like Davis was having a very good camp in a position of need for us, compared to the player we received for a position that we didn't really need to fill.
    Jim Thomas: I sure would take a look at Maroney, although I don't think Belichick is going to give him away (If Maroney is indeed on the way out. Belichick could just be taking a look, or showcasing some of the other players.) So it would take a trade.
    As for Davis, see earlier answers.

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    virginiatom: You have been around Kronke for a long time. As the minority owner, how involved was he with the Rams in terms of the players and on field decisions, under the previous owners? Was he an owner in name only, or was he actively involved with the team by being around the park, knowing the players, understanding player evaluations and the draft, etc? Also, his relationship with Shaw. Is this a good thing? It seems as if Shaw's incredibly poor decisions and backstabbing was part of the down fall of this once great team.
    Jim Thomas: Kroenke never was around Rams Park much. He was a regular at games, particularly home games, until recent years. As 40 percent, or minority owner, he was consulted on decisions and kept in the loop. In the past, he has sat in on some head-coaching candidate interviews. But the final say was always Georgia's (and then Chip's).
    I don't think Kroenke's relationship with Shaw is a problem. And say what you will against Shaw, he brought football back to St. Louis and was part of two Super Bowl teams and the Greatest Show On Turf.

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    RamFan: With AJ out with an injury, does it makes sense to start Bradford Thursday? Are 10 plays worth the risk of injury? Please tell me Jackson isn't going to play.
    Jim Thomas: Don't think Jackson's playing _ you may have seen his comments today saying he doesn't want to play but will play if Spags wants him to. Spags says he's thinking about playing Bradford and the starters for about 15 plays Thursday. (As all coaches do, he reserves the right to change his mind on that depending on game circumstances.) I know what you're saying about 10 plays _ are they worth the risk of injury. But Bradford does need reps.

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    andy russell: Greetings Jim - My question is about Greco's recovery/status/prognosis/etc. How's he doing? Will he be able to start soon? How good do you think he'll actually play? Is his position one that will need addressed in next year's draft? Thank you.
    Jim Thomas: Greco has been out most of camp with a pectoral muscle injury. (Chest muscle.) He did some "team" or 11-on-11 work in practice today, and it's the first such work I can recall him having since the injury. I think he's on the bubble for a final roster spot. As for addressing guard in the '11 draft _ could be. This looked like a position of strength, but then Setterstrom goes down with the season-ending triceps injury in June, and now Greco. Suddenly not so deep. Although Roger Allen III is a player the Rams still like.

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    bradfordok1: Jim, will the season home opener sell out?
    Jim Thomas: As of right now, good tickets are available.

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    Brock Landers: JIm: As the deadline approaches to get down to the 53 man limit, how does the process work for picking up players that are released? Do the Rams get first dibs on everyone because of their 2009 record? Or is it a bidding process where the highest bid generally wins?

    Do you foresee a quality running back being released that we can pick up to play #2 behind #39? I believe finding a quality backup to Jackson is essential to to this team's success,m or lack thereof. Having a true threat in the backfield takes a lot of pressure off the wideouts and the quarterback.

    Thanks,

    Brock Landers
    Jim Thomas: The Rams get first crack at any players with less than 4 years of NFL experience. Those players are subject to the 24-hour waiver period. In the case of multiple claims (more than one team claiming a player) the team with the worst record in the NFL in 2009 _ the Rams _ get first crack. (FYI, by Sept. 28, the multiple claim tiebreaker changes to current 2010 season won-loss record.) Anyway, players with four or more NFL seasons aren't subject to the waiver system. They are simply terminated, and basically become street free agents, able to go to the highest bidder.
    As for a potentially quality running back, Derrick Ward was cut by Tampa Bay today.

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    4thandJuan: Jim,

    Maybe you can make some sense of the trade with the Redskins. Why would the Rams trade a player who at least was in the mix for a roster spot (Hall Davis) for a TE that Mike Shanahan said was going to be cut? And why throw a conditional draft pick on top of that?

    Separately, has Phil Trautwein been placed on IR? What does his injury mean for the backup tackle positions?

    Thnx.
    Jim Thomas: Trautwein has been waived/injured, a designation that means he could possibly rejoin the club at a later date. (Once he's healthy.) Goldberg remains the third tackle behind starters Smith and Saffold. If one of the starters went down, Hank Fraley would replace Goldberg at guard with Goldberg moving out to tackle. After that...who knows? Currently, you're talking Ryan McKee, Eric Young, and Renardo Foster.

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    Steve B.: Hi Jim, appreciate you taking the time.
    My questions are about the tight ends:
    1)Does Hoomanawani start at TE this year?

    2) Does Onobun make the team, practice squad or get cut?

    3) If both guys make the team (I have to think "Oh Oh" already has) who is the odd man out, Bajema or Fells?
    Jim Thomas: 1.) I think if Oh-oh puts together another solid game against Baltimore, he's the starter.
    2.) Me personally, I think Oh-oh has shown enough that he has got to be kept on the 53-man roster.
    3.) I'd keep four TEs _ keeping both Bajema and Fells. Which probably means you keep only five WRs.

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    Bopat from Socal: Hello Jim,
    Glad to see Stan Kroneke is finally "The Man". For him to meet with the players and coaches at the New England game and to take in the whole contest I'm sure meant a lot to the team. What will Stan do for this team that Georgia Frontiere(R.I.P.) couldn't or wouldn't do? Also, what is up with John Shaw being Stan's "shadow"? I just think Shaw should disappear from this organization and let Stan run the team his way. Your thoughts, please. Thanks for your time.
    Jim Thomas: Stan and John are good friends. I believed they vacationed together this summer. I don't think it's an issue. And I think Stan will run the franchise his way.

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    Steve B.: Jim: Assuming the Rams keep five DEs on the roster, who stays besides Long, Hall, and probably Adeanju? Does Selvie make it on the basis of his early play, even though he's hurt now?
    Jim Thomas: I think Hall, Long and Selvie are safe. I think Adeyanju is on the bubble. You've got rookie Eugene Sims in the mix as well, plus C.J. Ah You.

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    KGMO Ram: Hey Jim. I love reading these chats. A couple of questions.

    1. At this time last year there was some debate about weather the Rams took the right MLB in the second round. Obviously Lauranitus has played well but I haven't heard how Mauluga has done. Any verdict on this debate and if one guy has outplayed the other?

    2. Any chance Lewis beats Null for the No. 3 QB spot?

    Thanks!
    Jim Thomas: 1.) Haven't heard much on Maualuga. But I think the Rams are very, very happy with Laurinaitis.
    2.) I think this one is a tossup, making the Baltimore game the Bubble Bowl for these guys.

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    Stan: Jim,
    With the health issues and inexperience at WR what are the chances of the Rams chasing Antonio Bryant or what about Free Agent Kevin Curtis?
    Jim Thomas: Looks like Bryant has a substantial knee problem and may not be ready for some time. Haven't heard anything on Curtis.

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    Tony P: Why is everyone pretty much dismissing Brandon Gibson?

    I know he hasnt been tearing up the preseason or anything, but hanst he been fighting the Injury Bug? He was one of very few bright spots to come out of last season making very impressive plays, along with your expected rookie mistakes, but still impressive. And now that he seems to be healthy, he showed off the skills from last season in the Patriot preseason game (4 receptions, for 50 yards, and a TD on 5 targets) but wasnt even brought up as a possibility to take the #2 WR spot now that Avery is down.
    Jim Thomas: Simply. Because he's hardly played or practiced since the spring because of a hamstring injury.

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    rob: Now that Derrick Ward was cut from the Bucs, any interest in him from the Rams, he has to be better than what we have a backup RB now
    Jim Thomas: To me, this one makes a lot of sense, particularly since Spags has a history with the guy. Keep in mind, during the free agency period following the '08 season _ Spags' first offseason with the team _ he called Ward during free agency to see if he'd be interested in coming here. Now maybe Ward still won't want to come here to back up Jackson, but it's better than not having a job.

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    Greg: Hi Jim,

    1. What's the percent chance that Bradford starts sept. 12th?
    2. Which QB could Bradford be most similar to:
    Warner, P. Manning, Brady, or Ryan?
    3. Yes or no, is the rams # 1 receiver currently the roster?
    Thanks!
    Jim Thomas: 1.) 80-20 Bradford starts.
    2.) The comparison I get from people most often is Troy Aikman.
    3.) Yes.

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    c_good: Hi Jim,

    Thanks for doing these chats.

    Following up on Bill Coats's story earlier this week: What's your impression of Thaddeus Lewis's standing, heading into the fourth preseason game? Does the staff seem to be leaning strongly toward either Lewis or Null? How have the two looked in practice, comparatively?

    (Lewis showed good decision-making in his senior year at Duke and came off as a viable backup in the Pats game. Just curious if he's ahead or behind at this point.)

    Thanks.
    Jim Thomas: Lewis has the far better stats; but Null has led the Rams to a pair of fourth-quarter rallies. I think it's pretty clos

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    George M.: Hi, Jim:

    Now that Stan is at the throttle, he is probably looking at free, easy ways to make games at the dome better and more exciting. The next time he takes you out to lunch to pick your brain, you might mention to him that the Rams in past years don't show replays of close plays on the big screen - I don't know why, but I think they want to avoid making it obvious that refs have blown a call. Other teams do this, though - for example, I noticed that the Patriots did in Thursday's game. This is a change that would cost the team nothing, but make the game experience better.
    Jim Thomas: FYI, the next time Stan "takes me out to lunch" will be the first time.
    And I haven't noticed that the Rams don't show close plays on the scoreboard.

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    jeff: I know it was pre season against the Pats,but I was pleased with the performance.Calling some passes on first down probably blew Belicheks mind.Do you see more versatility on first down this year.
    Jim Thomas: If Bradford continues to show what he showed against New England, why not?

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    YorkieRam: I believe Keenan Burton missed practice again today. Can this guy's body stand up to the rigors of the NFL? I truly feel that the light went on for him at the start of last year, but will his body allow him to develop??

    How do you read his situation??
    Jim Thomas: Burton is a fine, fine individual. He missed part of practice today after experiencing swelling in the knee. I think he's squarely on the bubble.

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    Eli: Hi Jim,
    Can I get your thoughts on Rodger Saffold, will he be a "dominant" left tackle or is he just good for now, until maybe Smith makes the transition from the right to the left in the future. I have been reading that he has been holding up his own and that he has good feet.
    thank you
    Jim Thomas: I don't know about dominant, but I think Saffold has the potential _ I underline the word "potential" _ to be a pretty good NFL left tackle. If Saffold settles in there and handles the position in the regular season, I think he stays there.

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    Scott: Is there any chance, other than injury (if one occurred), that Amendola will not be handling both kick and punt returns, as much as he did last year?
    Jim Thomas: Sure. I think you could see a situation where maybe Gilyard handles kickoffs and Amendola punts. Maybe sooner as opposed to later.

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    rams fan since 1969: Hello how you doing today.I am curious along with many of my fellow Rams longtime Rams fans with Stan now the owner will they be more aggressive in talented player aquisition than the were with Chip.(Other than digging at the bottom of the barrel or hitting the practice squad rosters)As it was obvious that they barely had any money to spend other than the Rookie pool that was set aside.I know Chip couldnt help it but it was frustrating as with our schedule if we had more flexability financially we could have added to the roster more and took advantage of the schedule.If only Stan could have took over sooner.Thank you very much.Sincerely Rams fan since 69.
    Jim Thomas: Really, this was the only year where I felt the Rams looked like they were financially hamstrung. And in fairness to Chip, if he was trying to just pocket money and get out, he would have traded out of the No. 2 overall draft spots in '08 and '09, and the No. 1 overall spot in '10 and saved millions and millions of dollars. I don't think Kroenke will go nuts in free agency like say a Dan Snyder, but I think he will do what's necessary to improve the roster and make the team competitive today.


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    chris l: is there any chance ernest reid can make the team
    Jim Thomas: I think he has a chance to make the practice squad.
    Gotta go. Thanks for your time and questions. Talk to you all next week.

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    MGibby: Jim, can you provide some insight as to how players are paid during training camp. Is theire a daily or weekly stipend?
    Jim Thomas: Rookies get $825 a week; veterans get $1,425. (They don't get their regular salaries until the regular season begins.)

  • #2
    Re: Jim Thomas Live - Aug. 31

    One question Mr Jim Thomas -

    How do you feel about the weird guy asking about the Rams renovated locker room? Do you think that was an awkward question, and do you have any idea why someone would give a @#$% about the locker room as opposed to the play on the field?

    Just kidding. But seriously?

    Comment

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