– Finally, after a long few months, the Rams returned to the practice field on Tuesday afternoon.
– The minicamp is voluntary for the veterans though with a new coaching staff in place, it’s strongly recommended anyone not wanting to fall behind attends.
– As such, the Rams had 59 of a possible 60 players present and accounted for at Tuesday’s workout.
– The only player not present was S Darian Stewart. Stewart is working toward his degree and had an exam to take. He could potentially join the team for the final practice tomorrow.
– Included in the group attending: QB Sam Bradford, LT Rodger Saffold, RB Steven Jackson, DE Chris Long, LB James Laurinaitis and all of the team’s new additions from free agency.
– Coach Jeff Fisher is pretty wide open in terms of what he allows the media to do but one area he doesn’t like to get into is injuries. So while the Rams had some of their injured players returning to workout, Fisher didn’t provide much of a glimpse at where they stand. He did, however, provide some comedic material when asked about some of his injured players.
“You know, I’ll have an injury report for you on September 5,” Fisher said, laughing.
– Fisher did say that newly signed DE William Hayes had an offseason procedure on his shoulder and was a bit limited.
– Otherwise, WR Greg Salas, CB Bradley Fletcher and others seemed to be rounding into shape and at least participating in parts of the practice.
– OT Jason Smith also was back on the field and he appears to be more chiseled and focused than ever. I’ll have more on Smith’s enthusiastic return to the team in a full story for the front page tomorrow but Smith wanted it known that he has used his battles with concussion to really zero in on the important things. To the point where he says the experience has been life changing.
– Fisher said Smith has been cleared full go and will have no limitations moving forward.
“Yeah, he’s good,” Fisher said. “He’s been here, he’s been working. He’s been working very well inside and his condition level is excellent. We’re excited about a new start for him, if you will.”
– Considering the timing of the minicamp, Fisher and his staff haven’t had much time to come up for air. They have worked with the players as much as possible but with the draft on the horizon, they have had to get back to draft meetings right after practice.
“Les (Snead) and I decided to take a little extra time, so we started a week earlier,” Fisher said. “So the first go around we got extra work to do and we have to do some tie breaking here over the next week or so, but it’s going well. The process is going well. The scouts have done a terrific job doing their research and their homework and the discussions and the conversations are going well.”
– The Rams will be back at it tomorrow with another practice. This minicamp is the extra one courtesy of the league for new coaching staffs. The Rams will have another minicamp, for rookies in May and a final mandatory whole team camp in mid-June.
Posted in From the Sidelines | 2 Comments »