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  • Martin again spells relief at QB

    By Jim Thomas
    Of the Post-Dispatch
    Tuesday, Dec. 07 2004

    Try as they might, the Rams simply can't get rid of Jamie Martin.

    "I'm not giving you a quote on that," Martin said Tuesday, smiling.

    Since being signed by the Los Angeles Rams as an undrafted rookie out of Weber
    State in 1993, Martin has been released by the franchise four times.

    He was with the club for most of the period from 1993 through 1996, appearing
    in only six regular-season games - all in '96 - and throwing only 34 passes.
    That included being cut twice in 1994. He also was cut after the 1997
    preseason, losing out in the battle for a backup job.

    He returned to the Rams in 2001 and 2002, appearing in five games for the Rams
    in '02, including two starts, throwing 195 passes.

    And now he returns. With Marc Bulger nursing a shoulder injury, and the Rams
    very much in a pennant race despite their modest 6-6 record, Martin has been
    signed as quarterback insurance for Chris Chandler.

    Martin, 34, hasn't been on an NFL roster since October 2003 with the New York
    Jets. He hasn't thrown a regular-season pass since the '02 season finale with
    the Rams.

    But if something should happen to Chandler on Sunday in Carolina, Martin could
    be next up. Provided, that is, he can get sufficiently re-immersed in the St.
    Louis offense.

    "We'll see how it goes this week," Martin said. "Mentally, I went over the
    stuff (Tuesday) and it's pretty similar. I'm obviously almost two years out of
    this offense. Last year, I was in a West Coast-offense type of thing.

    "It's kind of like translating everything back into this language. But we'll
    see how it goes in practice and the meetings and everything. I think a few days
    would be good enough."

    Martin has continued to live in St. Louis even after his release by the club
    following the 2002 season.

    "When I left the Rams the last time, we decided to stay in St. Louis until I
    was done playing officially," Martin said. "Even though I went to New York last
    year, we kept our place here. My son Jack started school here, kindergarten in
    the fall."

    Martin and his wife, Kelly, basically had decided that if he couldn't get back
    into the NFL this season, he would retire. As each week went by and Martin's
    phone didn't ring, it looked as if it was time for life after football.

    Then Bulger went down with a bone bruise in his throwing shoulder against San
    Francisco, and the Rams called Monday.

    "How this changes anything, I don't know," Martin said. "It probably doesn't
    change much. We'll probably still be looking at next year as kind of being

    But who knows?

    "Just when you get it figured out, something happens that you haven't seen
    before," Martin said. "I'm just happy to be with these guys. It's good to step
    into a system I know, and hopefully, I can help out in some way."

    Martin joined Glen Echo Country Club and played golf there almost every day
    this past summer. His handicap is down to about a 7 or 8. As for football, he
    has tried to stay in "functional" shape.

    "I've been keeping myself ready," he said. "I throw a little bit here and
    there. There's a couple guys I hook up with - just guys I met along the way."

    But not professional pass catchers.

    "I've been throwing the ball in the NFL for 10 years," Martin said. "I know how
    to throw the ball. But just getting the timing down, I haven't been throwing to
    Isaac Bruce or Torry Holt."

    That changes this afternoon at Rams Park. Martin happened to be watching the
    Rams game Sunday when Bulger got hurt.

    "I separated my shoulder here in 2002, so I knew that could be an issue for a
    few weeks," Martin said. "So I was thinking they might try to get hold of me.

    "I'd known all along that if something happened, there was a chance that Mike
    (Martz) would call me up."

    Martin realizes his stay may be short. There's a chance the Rams could carry an
    extra quarterback for the rest of this season. But he might be released as soon
    as Bulger is healthy enough to play again.

    "I've been released a lot," Martin said. "I mean, everybody gets released at
    some point. It's just part of the deal sometimes. You don't take it personal."

Related Topics


  • HUbison
    Rams' call reinvigorates Martin
    by HUbison
    Rams' call reinvigorates Martin
    By Bill Coats
    Of the Post-Dispatch

    When Jamie Martin was watching television on Dec. 5 and saw Rams quarterback Marc Bulger trudging to the sideline with his right arm hanging limp, Martin had an inkling that his phone soon might ring.

    "I was thinking they might try to get hold of me," he said. "I'd known all along that if something happened, there was a chance that Mike (Martz, the Rams' head coach) would call."

    Martin, originally an undrafted rookie from Weber State, has 10 pro seasons in the bank, but he had not been in the NFL for nearly a year-and-a-half after the New York Jets released him in August 2003.

    He had spent six seasons - 1993 through 1996 and 2001 and 2002 - with the Rams, who suddenly were in dire need of an experienced quarterback. Plus, he was living in St. Charles, a short drive from Rams Park.

    Sure enough, just two days after the hit on Bulger by San Francisco defensive end Bryant Young damaged Bulger's shoulder, Martin's name was on a contract, and he was on the practice field. Two weeks later, after Chris Chandler faltered badly in relief of Bulger, Martin saw his first action since the 2002 season. He completed 16 of 31 passes for 188 yards in a 31-7 loss at Arizona.

    Bulger returned the next week and completed the season, but Chandler had stumbled out of town, and Martin had done enough in Martz's estimation to earn another invitation. This one, however, wasn't an emergency plea; Martin signed a one-year deal in April and has been in training camp from the start, working with the second unit.

    "He's never had the benefit of the prolonged preparation from spring all the way through, particularly as a No. 2," Martz said. "I'm excited that we have him, that we can train him and prepare him the right way."

    Martin, 35, was perhaps a month away from filing his retirement papers with the league when the Rams summoned him in December. "I had pretty much decided that I was done, but I wanted to wait till the end of the season and see if anything did happen," he said. "It worked out good."

    After he rekindled his competitive fire last year, he's burning for more. "In the offseason when I talked to Mike about possibly coming back, I got excited," he said. "After a year-and-a-half off, you get a little bored at times."

    Martin has been busy at camp as he tries to fully absorb Martz's highly nuanced offense. "He's really excelling at it," Martz said. "He's going to be fine. Now, it's just getting Jamie enough repetitions. We're giving him all the turns that we can."

    Said Martin: "It's just getting reacquainted with everything. That's what (camp is) for - trying to get back into the timing of the things,...
    -08-05-2005, 08:41 AM
  • RamWraith
    Having Martin ready at QB is big relief for Rams
    by RamWraith
    By Jim Thomas

    The circumstances and the situation are a bit different each time, but by now, this has become routine for Jamie Martin. A starting quarterback goes down, and in comes the righthander from Weber State out of the bullpen.

    "This has been my career - the career of a backup - being ready in this situation," Martin said. "Having those two games earlier in the year under my belt really helps. You can kind of calm down this week. You know what to expect. And hopefully, we'll have some good games."

    It could be several games for Martin as the Rams' starting quarterback because Marc Bulger's latest shoulder injury is more serious than the one he suffered last month. Martin was thrown into the action against Indianapolis, and then started against New Orleans and Jacksonville. It's quite possible that Bulger will be out for the remainder of the season.

    But Martin isn't worried about the long haul, just the start against the Houston Texans on Sunday in Reliant Stadium.

    "We'll think about next week, next week," Martin said. "And think about the week after that, after that. That's all I do. That's all I'm ever going to do, is just think about today."

    By now, the Rams know what to expect from Martin. At various times in the 2002 season, he came off the bench to replace an injured Kurt Warner, an injured Bulger, and an ineffective Scott Covington. Along the way, he started two games. Last season, he played most of the Rams' game Dec. 19 in Arizona after a first-quarter meltdown of epic proportions by Chris Chandler.

    And this season, there was the aforementioned 2 1/2-game stint in place of Bulger. You could go back even further - nine seasons and two Rams stints earlier - when Martin replaced injured Tony Banks and rallied the Rams to a season-ending 14-13 victory over New Orleans.

    "It's never easy," Martin said. "Like I said, maybe I'm a little bit more comfortable. But it's a challenge. Being a quarterback in the NFL is not easy - whether you're the starter, the third guy, or the backup, or whatever."

    On Monday, interim head coach Joe Vitt expressed concern about sore ribs that Martin took out of the Arizona game, compliments of the blitz-happy Big Red. On Wednesday, Martin shrugged off questions about his health, much like Cardinals safety Adrian Wilson shrugged off Rams blockers

    "Everybody's banged up," Martin said. "I took a couple shots, but nothing bad. ... It's nothing to worry about."

    At age 35, Martin has been banging around the NFL since 1993, with stops in Washington, Jacksonville, Cleveland, and the New York Jets between his various Rams stints.

    In all that time, he has started only five games and thrown only 430 passes. Suffice...
    -11-24-2005, 06:45 AM
  • RamWraith
    Martin Back at the Helm
    by RamWraith
    Wednesday, November 23, 2005

    By Nick Wagoner
    Senior Writer

    As the Rams embarked on this season, the expectations for the offense were as high as they had been in years. At the top of the list of things expected to make the offense better was the continued development of quarterback Marc Bulger.

    Bulger finished 2004 on a strong note and had made his move to the top tier of quarterbacks in the league. With that, even his teammates began to expect big things from their signal caller.

    “I came into the year thinking that 10 had a chance to be MVP of the league,” defensive lineman Tyoka Jackson said. “I believe that. He has been hurt a couple times and that is killer to our team. You don’t like to go in games without all of your guns. We need him, but unfortunately he won’t be there. So we have to ride with what we got.”

    What the Rams have is backup Jamie Martin. After Bulger suffered an aggravation of the sprained AC joint in his shoulder against Arizona on Sunday, Martin was left to take over for Bulger for the second time this season.

    When Bulger suffered the injury the first time in the team’s loss to Indianapolis on Oct. 17, Martin came in and struggled at times. But, with Bulger out for the following two games against New Orleans and Jacksonville, Martin answered the call. In fact, Martin led the Rams to a pair of victories in those games to get them back to .500 going into the bye week.

    Make no mistake, Martin didn’t exactly carry the Rams to wins in those games, but as a backup, he isn’t expected to.

    “I have come to expect good things from Jamie,” receiver Torry Holt said. “He’s been here before; he’s been in this situation before. We rolled with Jamie the last two games before we went into the bye week. He has proven that we can win with Jamie. We are OK, we are fine with Jamie. We are fortunate enough to have a guy that understands the system.”

    Martin’s numbers weren’t eye popping like some that Bulger has posted, but he did enough in the passing game to keep the Jaguars and Saints honest, opening things up for a pair of big games from running back Steven Jackson.

    Against New Orleans, Martin was 18-of-29 for 198 yards. He had no touchdown passes, but didn’t throw an interception, either. A week later against the Jaguars, Martin had some more successes, but also a few more mistakes. In that game, he was 13-of-21 for 200 yards with two touchdowns and three interceptions. One of the touchdowns, though, was an 83-yard strike to Kevin Curtis.

    “This is my career,” Martin said. “I’m a career backup to be ready in these situations. Having those two games earlier in the year under my belt really helps to kind of calm down this week and know what to expect and hopefully have some good games.”

    One advantage Martin will have in this stint as the starter is a full cadre...
    -11-23-2005, 02:52 PM
  • HUbison
    QB Martin agrees to deal with Rams
    by HUbison
    QB Martin agrees to deal with Rams

    Of the Post-Dispatch

    Veteran quarterback Jamie Martin is returning to the Rams for another season.

    Martin and the Rams agreed to terms on a one-year contract Wednesday. Martin will receive a base salary of $765,000, plus a small signing bonus.

    “He’s looking forward to coming back,” said Martin’s agent, Tom Mills. “He would have entertained a conversation with another team, but he lives in St. Louis. He’s had to uproot his family several times during his career, and wasn’t looking forward to doing it again.”

    Martin, 35, will compete with Jeff Smoker for the No. 2 quarterback job behind starter Marc Bulger.

    The Rams also have Russ Michna on their current roster. If nothing else, Martin represents a security blanket for coach Mike Martz. Martin knows the offense, knows Martz, and is comfortable working in a backup role.

    Martin was signed by the Rams last Dec. 7 after Bulger was sidelined with a shoulder injury.

    He completed 16 of 31 passes for 188 yards in his only action of the 2004 season, taking over against Arizona on Dec. 19 following Chris Chandler’s meltdown at Sun Devil Stadium.
    -04-20-2005, 12:26 PM
  • general counsel
    Do people still think jamie martin stinks?
    by general counsel
    Another serviceable game from martin. Great great thrown on the bomb to curtis. Dont know what happened on the int to looker, he was open cant tell if it was the throw or looker. The int in the end zone was a fantastic play by the db.

    As backups go, he isnt so bad. I think the expectations on this board for backups in the cap era are often misplaced. How did garcia look today as a backup to the lions fans?

    Here is what i know about martin. 2-0.

    ramming speed to all

    general counsel
    -10-30-2005, 04:01 PM