Rams Notes, Quotes and Anecdotes
By Rams Nation's Site Staff
"I feel like I've missed two months of practice," Curtis had said.
"I'm (glad) to get back, hear the plays called and run the plays.
"The (thigh) feels fine. It's just getting out here and running routes. I feel a little rusty. I've been studying the plays on paper but when you're in the huddle and everything is quicker you've got to think a lot faster."
Said coach Mike Martz, "It was shocking that he knew where to be consistently. We always talk about injured players doing mental reps and that's what he did."
It wasn't a good week for fullback J.R. Niklos. He entered training camp as the starter, but wasn't able to play against the Raiders because of a concussion.
During one practice, Niklos was admonished by coach Mike Martz, who said, "Block him, don't tackle him. Block him."
Niklos then heard from Martz after trying to block by leading with his head. But he did that again, and experienced the concussion blocking linebacker Pisa Tinoisamoa.
Later, he said he didn't remember Martz's criticisms.
"No, but I heard about it," Niklos said. "They told me it's a good thing I don't remember that."
For most of camp, safety Nick Sorensen and quarterback Marc Bulger had been working as holders with kicker Jeff Wilkins. Ricky Proehl, the holder the last few seasons, signed with Carolina in the offseason.
So it was something of a surprise when coach Mike Martz said wide receiver Dane Looker would be the holder. Special teams coach Bobby April believed Looker was the best holder, but it was uncertain whether he would make the roster.
When Martz revealed Looker would be the holder, he also said Looker would be the team's fourth receiver. Of course, that was before Kevin Curtis played as well as he did in the first preseason game. Rookie Shaun McDonald is currently the third receiver.
"Dane makes our team right now as our fourth receiver," Martz said. "He's our fourth receiver in our four-wide receiver sets. Troy (Edwards) is also in the mix at all four spots, but I think at this point, mentally, Dane understands it a little bit more. That doesn't mean it's going to stay that way. We've got four weeks to go."
"He's real good, obviously, being a receiver, catching the ball and he's real good at getting it down," said Wilkins. "Now we're just trying to get the spin and the tilt."
Said Looker, "I think I had to prove myself on offense a little bit before they wanted to give me an opportunity to hold. There's a lot of camp left. I've gotten my hopes up before and it hasn't worked out. I don't want to jinx myself. If I'm on the roster it feels great, but this is my fourth camp in Macomb and I've spent three active games on the roster."
QUOTE TO NOTE:
"It (sucks) for the players. Especially, the first preseason game, while we're still in training camp. Those kinds of things are really annoying in the preseason. I think it's ridiculous. It'll probably take a few days to recover from that." - S Adam Archuleta on the first preseason game against Oakland, in which the team had to travel three hours from Macomb, Ill., to St. Louis for the flight, arrive back in St. Louis at 5 a.m. Saturday morning and then back to Macomb again.