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Rams blame Bulger injury on cheap shot

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  • Rams blame Bulger injury on cheap shot

    Rams blame Bulger injury on cheap shot
    By Jim Thomas
    Of the Post-Dispatch
    Sunday, Oct. 24 2004

    Miami defensive end
    drove the quarterback
    to ground, Martz says

    MIAMI - As if the 31-14 final score weren't bad enough for the Rams,
    quarterback Marc Bulger ended Sunday's game with a sore throwing shoulder after
    what the Rams claim was a cheap-shot hit by Miami defensive end Jason Taylor.

    "I know how he got hurt, and it bothers me," coach Mike Martz said. "He got
    driven into the ground."

    The play in question occurred when Bulger threw a touchdown pass to Shaun
    McDonald with 5 minutes 19 seconds remaining in the game. After being hit by
    Taylor, Bulger complained to referee Johnny Grier, but there was no flag.

    "I wasn't arguing with the fact that it was late," Bulger said. "And I know
    it's football. But it's just a matter that you're in a vulnerable position, the
    ball's gone already, and he slams you down."

    Officiating crews seem to be watching late hits on quarterbacks more closely
    this season, but that wasn't the case Sunday with Bulger.

    "I had my name on the back of my jersey, maybe that's why," Bulger said,
    suggesting that a more prominent quarterback might have gotten a call.

    After examination by team medical officials, Bulger said he didn't expect to
    have an MRI exam.

    "They said it wasn't separated," Bulger said. "They know exactly what happened,
    right at the spot that it's hurt. It's just an AC joint. ... I think the week
    off will help."

    The Rams have a bye this week and don't play until Nov. 7 against New England.

    Long injury report

    Bulger isn't the only Rams player who might need the bye week to get healthy.

    Rookie Brandon Chillar, starting for the second game in a row in place of the
    injured Robert Thomas (ankle), suffered a pulled hamstring in the first
    quarter. He was replaced at middle linebacker by Trev Faulk.

    Wide receiver Dane Looker suffered an ankle injury making a third-down catch on
    the Rams' second-quarter touchdown drive. The Rams scored on the next play, so
    Bulger took over Looker's holder duties on the extra point. Looker returned to
    hold following the Rams' fourth-quarter TD but was replaced in the Rams'
    four-wide receiver sets by Kevin Curtis.

    Several other Rams failed to finish the game: starting defensive end Bryce
    Fisher left with a bruised chest; offensive tackle Grant Williams left with a
    pinched nerve in his neck and shoulder area; and backup cornerback Dwight
    Anderson suffered a shoulder injury on punt coverage early in the fourth

    Williams' injury forced some shuffling on the offensive line in the fourth
    quarter. Starting left guard Scott Tercero moved to Williams' spot at right
    tackle, with Chris Dishman coming off the bench to play left guard.

    Fisher has rough return

    Although he finished the game, cornerback Travis Fisher may have aggravated the
    forearm injury he suffered Aug. 23 in a preseason game against Kansas City.
    Fisher was cleared to play last Monday and found out Thursday he would start
    against the Dolphins.

    Fisher thought he aggravated the forearm sometime in the first half against the
    Dolphins. He had an X-ray after the game and could have additional examination
    today in St. Louis.

    In his first action in two months, Fisher missed a tackle on Miami's first
    touchdown - an 8-yard run by Sammy Morris. He also was beaten on Chris
    Chambers' 71-yard TD catch in the fourth quarter.

    Harris, T. Jackson sit

    Because of hamstring injuries, second-year running back Arlen Harris missed his
    first game as a Ram and defensive captain Tyoka Jackson missed his second
    straight game.

    Harris and Jackson were among the Rams' seven pregame inactives. The others: DT
    Jimmy Kennedy (foot); PK Jeff Chandler; and OGs Darnell Alford, Tom Nutten, and
    Blaine Saipaia.

    With Harris out, undrafted rookie Anderson handled kickoff return duties for
    the first time in the NFL. Following Anderson's injury, Mike Furrey returned
    kickoffs. Dusty McGrorty, promoted Friday from the practice squad, was the
    team's third running back and played on special teams. In a mild surprise, Jeff
    Wilkins played despite suffering an ankle injury last week against Tampa Bay,
    but he had a light day with only two extra points and three kickoffs.

  • #2
    Re: Rams blame Bulger injury on cheap shot

    Originally posted by NickSeiler
    Rams blame Bulger injury on cheap shot
    By Jim Thomas
    Of the Post-Dispatch
    Sunday, Oct. 24 2004

    "I wasn't arguing with the fact that it was late," Bulger said. "And I know
    it's football. But it's just a matter that you're in a vulnerable position, the
    ball's gone already, and he slams you down."
    It is football. Maybe that'll motivate you to bulk up next year. QBs are pampered enough already. DL are expected to stop in mid-air as is already.


    • #3
      Re: Rams blame Bulger injury on cheap shot

      Originally posted by adarian_too
      It is football. Maybe that'll motivate you to bulk up next year. QBs are pampered enough already. DL are expected to stop in mid-air as is already.
      This kind of crap is called on the Rams all the time when they can't pull up, so why isn't it called on Rams QBs? Perhaps Bulger and some fans wouldn't be upset if the refs at least showed some consistency when making these calls.


      • #4
        Re: Rams blame Bulger injury on cheap shot

        Originally posted by NickSeiler
        This kind of crap is called on the Rams all the time when they can't pull up, so why isn't it called on Rams QBs? Perhaps Bulger and some fans wouldn't be upset if the refs at least showed some consistency when making these calls.
        It's a valid point. Just another example of how we have managed to get things half-asssed backwards where the NFL is more concerned with protecting refs than the integrity of the competition when they choose to fine coaches for voicing their opinion about public events rather than fixing the underlying problems.


        Related Topics


        • RamWraith
          Bulger displays tact as opponent gets fined for hit
          by RamWraith
          By Bill Coats
          Of the Post-Dispatch
          Rams quarterback Marc Bulger, an admitted political junkie, could be excused for his slightly bleary-eyed look Wednesday morning at Rams Park. He was up until about 1 a.m., monitoring the election returns on television.

          Bulger, a Republican who attended the presidential debate last month at Washington University, acknowledged that he was happy with the results. "I am," he said. "Just the fact that it's decided and we're not going to have to sit around and wait. Either way it would've gone, I think that would've been good for everyone, to have some clarity. And now that we have it, it's good."

          Bulger was equally diplomatic when asked his reaction to the $7,500 fine the NFL levied against Miami defensive end Jason Taylor. Taylor was cited for unnecessary roughness for body-slamming Bulger to the ground in the fourth quarter Oct. 24 as Bulger threw a touchdown pass to wide receiver Shaun McDonald. Bulger suffered a bruised right shoulder, but no penalty was called.

          "You don't like to see guys fined," Bulger said. "I'm sure it wasn't intentional. I just wish they would've thrown a flag rather than have him fined. But it's over with now."

          Looker and Cleeland miss practice session

          Wide receiver Dane Looker and tight end Cam Cleeland, both nursing ankle injuries, sat out Wednesday's practice. Looker, who suffered a high-ankle sprain vs. the Dolphins, probably will miss Sunday's gave against New England. Cleeland, who turned his lower ankle in practice Monday, is expected to be ready.

          "We're on the mend physically," coach Mike Martz said. "This is probably as healthy as we've been."

          Linebacker Brandon Chillar, who pulled his right hamstring in the first quarter at Miami, returned to practice Wednesday. He was hurt after making his second successive start at middle linebacker. "It's part of the game," said Chillar, the Rams' fourth-round draft choice last April. "You've just got to roll with this type of stuff. There are a lot of games left."

          Grant Williams (neck, shoulder) participated in most of the work Wednesday after seeing limited action Monday. Williams, who shared time at right tackle with Scott Tercero in team drills, said the "stinger" he suffered in the second half against the Dolphins left his right side "a little weak, but it's doing pretty good. I'm doing a little more each day in practice, and we'll see how it goes."

          Defensive tackle Jimmy Kennedy (foot), linebacker Robert Thomas (ankle), running back and kick returner Arlen Harris (hamstring), defensive end Tyoka Jackson and cornerback Travis Fisher (arm) practiced without limitations.

          Looker was listed as doubtful on Wednesday's injury report. Chillar, Cleeland,...
          -11-04-2004, 03:07 PM
        • RamWraith
          Bulger shoulders the pain
          by RamWraith
          By Jim Thomas
          Of the Post-Dispatch
          Wednesday, Dec. 08 2004

          It looks like Chris Chandler will be the Rams' starting quarterback for the
          Carolina AND Arizona games.

          In his first comments to reporters since suffering a bruised shoulder Sunday
          against San Francisco, Marc Bulger said his target date for a return is Dec. 27
          against Philadelphia.

          "I think we're shooting for Philly now," Bulger said. "Best case, hopefully, I
          can be back for next week. You hate to guess right now. You don't know after I
          can finally throw if it's going to flare back up. So I'm going to rest it a
          week and then see."

          The Rams play at Carolina on Sunday; and then travel to Arizona for a game Dec.

          Bulger said the shoulder has improved since Sunday's game. So he might try some
          light throwing Monday or Tuesday, "just to see how it reacts."

          For the most part, Bulger said the discomfort in the shoulder isn't too bad.

          "But throwing a football is obviously different," he said. "If it was my left
          shoulder, I think I could play. But being the right shoulder, throwing the ball
          is just about impossible right now.

          "I obviously can't sleep on it. Can't put any pressure on it. Anything going
          across my body hurts a lot worse than anything going away from my body. The
          throwing motion kind of goes across, and that's where I run into problems."

          Bulger said he has been sleeping on his back since the injury, which apparently
          has led to some noisy nights. "I think I snore a little bit on my back," he

          Bulger has yet to receive any miracle shoulder cures from fans.

          "I got some cookies from a neighbor, that's about it," Bulger said.

          Bulger suffered a bone bruise in his throwing shoulder at the top of the
          collarbone against San Francisco. The shoulder was X-rayed at the Edward Jones
          Dome. But Bulger then left with team doctor Matt Matava for an MRI exam at
          Barnes-Jewish West County Hospital.

          "We were driving out there listening to the game on the radio," Bulger said.
          "It was definitely a weird feeling."

          The Rams wanted to get an MRI as soon as possible because of concerns over a
          possible shoulder separation in the AC joint.

          "I felt it click when I went down," Bulger said. "Immediately that's what I
          thought - the AC."

          But Bulger and the Rams were relieved to learn that it was just a bone bruise.
          A separation in the AC joint probably would have sidelined him for the rest of
          the season. And such injuries also can affect a quarterback's throwing...
          -12-09-2004, 04:29 AM
        • RamWraith
          Bulger has begun throwing, but return is questionable
          by RamWraith
          By Jim Thomas
          Rams Bulger
          Rams quarterback Marc Bulger (right) is weighing whether it makes sense for him to return this season and risk aggravating his shoulder injury.
          (Chris Lee/P-D)

          A part of Marc Bulger wants to get back in the lineup ASAP, even if his injured right shoulder isn't fully healed.

          "You don't want to sit here and say, 'I'm going to be smart and just sit it out and get better,'" Bulger said Tuesday. "You think about that a little bit. But that's not my decision. That's not my job. I get paid to play regardless of our record and regardless of how things are going. Right now, I want to be in there."

          But a part of him says: Don't rush it this time. Bulger has injured his right shoulder four times over the 2004 and 2005 seasons:

          * At Miami on Oct. 24, 2004.

          * Against San Francisco on Dec. 5, 2004.

          * At Indianapolis on Oct. 17 this season.

          * And most recently, against Arizona on Nov. 20.

          Each time, Bulger has rushed back into the lineup before the shoulder felt totally right, and he injured it again. The San Francisco injury last season lingered into the offseason - affecting his offseason training - even though he nursed it through the final two regular-season games and two playoff contests.

          "It really didn't feel normal again until April or so," Bulger said. "I was a couple months behind last year. So that goes back to would it be smart to come back or not this year."

          For now, those considerations are a mere mental exercise, because at the moment, Bulger's shoulder still isn't right.

          For the first time since suffering the latest shoulder injury, Bulger threw Tuesday at Rams Park. He still experienced discomfort in the shoulder, and that was throwing at a distance of only 15 yards.

          "I couldn't get much velocity," Bulger said. "I wouldn't be able to go in and throw deep outs and deep balls."

          Or anything close to that. So that means Bulger will miss this Sunday's home game against Philadelphia, leaving only the game against San Francisco on Dec. 24 and the season finale Jan. 1 at Dallas.

          Bulger will try to throw again early next week. But if he can't throw 15 yards without discomfort this week, will his shoulder improve dramatically in seven days?

          "I don't anticipate it getting much better that quick," he said. "But I'm just trying to prepare myself if it is."

          If he isn't ready by San Francisco next week, it seems almost silly to attempt to play in the final game. Why risk taking a shot on the shoulder against Dallas, which could mean another late start in his offseason conditioning program? Because every time Bulger injures his shoulder, he can't lift...
          -12-14-2005, 04:10 AM
        • RamWraith
          Down time for Bulger
          by RamWraith
          By Jim Thomas

          Only once in the past five seasons has the Rams' starting quarterback made it through the entire 16-game schedule unscathed by injury. It won't happen this season, either.

          Although no one is saying anything officially at Rams Park, quarterback Marc Bulger almost certainly will be sidelined until after the team's bye week (Nov. 6) after suffering a shoulder injury Monday night in Indianapolis.

          Bulger is expected to miss this Sunday's game against New Orleans, plus the Rams' game Oct. 30 against Jacksonville. There's an outside chance that Bulger could return against the Jaguars. But it's more likely that he will remain sidelined until the Rams' game Nov. 13 in Seattle.

          In the meantime, Jamie Martin will be the starter with rookie Ryan Fitzpatrick as the top reserve. It's possible the Rams could add a third quarterback to provide insurance until Bulger returns. Former Rams draft pick Jeff Smoker, released this preseason, remains available. But as of early Tuesday evening, no decision on adding a quarterback appeared imminent.

          Bulger has been diagnosed with a sprained AC joint in his throwing shoulder. As far as any further bone or structural damage, X-rays Monday in Indy and an MRI Tuesday in St. Louis were negative.

          The AC joint - or acromioclavicular joint - basically is where the shoulder blade meets the collarbone. Most shoulder separations occur at this point.

          In terms of sprained AC joints, Bulger said, "I think there's all kinds of degrees. How far the joint separates and things like that. But fortunately, we took X-rays right off the bat, and there's no bone break or anything like that."

          When asked Monday night how bad he thought this injury was, Bulger replied, "It seems similar in pain to last year."

          And by "last year," he meant the shoulder injury he suffered Dec. 5 against San Francisco, not a lesser shoulder injury he suffered Oct. 24 in Miami.

          "When I had the Miami (injury), I was able to go back in," Bulger said. "But I knew after this one (against the Colts), I was unable to continue. But hopefully we'll get some good news ... and they can shoot some crazy stuff in there, and I can come back sooner. Maybe. We'll see."

          This marks the third time in four seasons that Bulger will miss time because of injury:

          *Last season, he missed the Rams' Dec. 12 game in Carolina and Dec. 19 game in Arizona, as well as most of the Dec. 5 ***** contest because of the shoulder injury.

          *In 2002, he missed Games 11-13 because of a hand injury, and then missed most of Game 15 and all of Game 16 because of neck and back injuries.

          *In 2003, Bulger started every game after replacing the injured Kurt Warner (concussion) after Game 1....
          -10-19-2005, 04:12 AM
        • RamWraith
          Bulger swaggers in pocket
          by RamWraith
          By Jim Thomas
          Of the Post-Dispatch
          Wednesday, Sep. 07 2005

          When last seen against San Francisco, Rams quarterback Marc Bulger was being
          helped off the field of the Edward Jones Dome after getting crumpled by *****
          defensive tackle Bryant Young.

          With 1 1/2 minutes remaining in the opening quarter that day, Young eluded Rams
          offensive tackle Grant Williams, sacking Bulger for a 10-yard loss.

          "Bryant Young just had my hand, held it to my side, and I landed on my right
          shoulder," Bulger recalled Wednesday. "It was in an awkward position (for) the
          AC joint. ... I couldn't really brace my shoulder for the fall, and it just
          kind of slid out, or whatever those joints do."

          Bulger knew right away that his throwing shoulder was messed up.

          "With the shoulder, those ligaments get stretched and it's just nearly
          impossible (to throw)," he said. "You can fight through the pain, but you're
          still flinching, and you won't put the ball where you want."

          Strange as it sounds, that game proved to be a watershed moment in Bulger's
          career. Although Chris Chandler got the Rams through the rest of that Dec. 5
          contest for a 16-6 victory, he was a disaster in losses the following weeks at
          Carolina and Arizona.

          Bulger's importance to the team was painfully underscored in those defeats.
          Just as eye-catching was how he played once he returned. In the Rams' final two
          regular-season games of the 2004, plus their two playoff contests, Bulger
          completed 67.6 percent of his passes for 1,287 yards, with eight touchdowns,
          four interceptions and a stellar passer rating of 106.3.

          According to wide receiver Isaac Bruce, that has led to a greater air of
          confidence in Bulger this training camp and preseason.

          "I think he realizes what he means to this team, and what he means to this
          offense now," Bruce said. "That was very evident when he went down last year
          vs. the ***** here at home, and we missed him for those two games. Things
          didn't go as well as they should have when he was in there. I believe just
          having him in the offense makes everything a whole lot smoother."

          This preseason, Bulger and the entire starting offense looked scraggly in
          limited duty in the opener against Chicago. But against San Diego and Detroit,
          Bulger was on fire. In those two games, he completed 74.2 percent of his passes
          for 348 yards with three TDs, two interceptions, and a passer rating of 110.1.

          No wonder coach Mike Martz, when asked about Bulger's play this preseason,
          said: "I think he's probably pretty close to where he was when last season
          ended, to be honest with...
          -09-08-2005, 05:11 AM