ST. LOUIS On one hand, time on the field is necessary, each repetition crucial in helping a young player develop before results are real.
On the other, injuries understand no difference between preseason and snaps that count toward true victory and defeat. Pain can strike on a tired Thursday in late August or on a Sunday with playoff berths at stake late in the fall. There are no boundaries.
On one hand, the St. Louis Rams were smart to play rookie defensive tackle Michael Brockers the 14th overall pick late in the first quarter of a meaningless 31-17 victory over the Baltimore Ravens at the Edward Jones Dome. Yes, this was the snooze-worthy fourth preseason game. Yes, his spot on the 53-man roster is secure. Yes, the Ravens rested all but three of their first-teamers on defense. But no matter: The hulking LSU product is green, and any work is good work for an unproven talent.
On the other, there was risk involved with Brockers sticking his fingers in the turf on a night tha...