– The Rams rookies reported for duty on Tuesday night and returned to the practice field on Wednesday. On Thursday, they went through their second workout of the week as they head toward the start of the full squad portion of training camp set to begin on Sunday.
– Coach Jeff Fisher said after the practice that he’s been pleased with the knowledge his rookies retained and there were no bumps or hiccups in terms of information. All 32 players scheduled to appear have appeared and there’s been just one player slowed in the first two days.
– That player is G Rokevious Watkins, who struggled with some conditioning tests upon arrival in St. Louis and was held out of Thursday’s practice because of it. There’s a big opportunity for him with the opening on the left side but it will be up to him to get up to speed and get into shape quickly should he want to be a serious contender for that job.
– Rookie CB Trumaine Johnson appeared in his first practice Thursday after he overslept and missed his flight on Wednesday. The missed connection kept Johnson from arriving in St. Louis until 6 p.m. Wednesday. He signed his contract upon arrival and was back in business on Thursday.
– Johnson was asked about the persistent speculation that he’ll be moving to safety but said he’s been told nothing about such a move. He’s worked exclusively at corner and inside in the nickel. That’s true to what Fisher said from the get go and figures to hold true moving forward.
– Fellow CB Janoris Jenkins spoke to the media on Thursday afternoon and said he was never concerned with his contract status. Sure enough, his deal was done on time and he missed absolutely nothing in terms of team activities. His focus, he said, is and always has been on football. He’s excited for his opportunity and said though he is ready to compete, he’s not allowing himself to worry about winning a starting job. Instead, he said he’ll do whatever possible to just help the team win games.
– The only non-rookie to show up for this part of “pre” camp is TE Mike Hoomanawanui. The Hoo Man has returned with a vengeance after he was officially cleared to play full speed on Tuesday. League rules allow players recovering from injury to participate in these early workouts and Hoomanawanui said this was the plan all along.
– I’ll have more on Hoomanawanui tomorrow but it needs to be noted here that he is taking this very serious. He has come back in excellent shape, trimmed down to 262 pounds and says he went from about 14 percent body fat to about 10 percent. He’s not allowing himself to worry about what the future holds and is focusing on doing whatever possible to perform at a high level with the belief that the rest will take care of itself.
– Most of the rookie workouts have focused on individual drills with a little 7 on 7 mixed in. Because of the low numbers, there’s simply no way to have full on scrimmages so the group has done mostly drill work. Fisher said he had to dial back the reps for his team but wanted the rookies to take advantage as much as possible because when the veterans arrive, those reps won’t be as plentiful.
– That’ll do it for me tonight. Off to the Jeff Fisher Celebrity Softball game. I’ll have stories on Hoomanawanui and the two rookie corners tomorrow. As always, thanks for reading.
Posted in From the Sidelines | 2 Comments »