Found August 15, 2012 on
Fox Sports Midwest:
ST. LOUIS (AP) Rams right tackle Jason Smith finds himself battling for playing time this summer with free agent signee Barry Richardson.
That's just fine with Smith, a former No. 2 overall draft pick who is working with the second string and did not start in the Rams' preseason opener at Indianapolis Sunday.
"Everything that's happening to me as far as, I think the word is demoted, to the twos or not working with the first string that's just great," Smith said. "I needed to earn the job. I needed to be accountable when I'm on the field and in the huddle."
Given where he was selected in the 2009 NFL draft, most players would expect to be entrenched as a starter. But the 6-foot-5, 308-pound Smith, who has had concussion and other injuries, has started just 26 of a possible 48 games.
Smith said he feels "great" and still believes he has what it takes to be a starting tackle in the NFL.
"Physically, I have all the attributes that I need to be successful," Smith said. "A lot of the game is mental; a lot of it is technique.
"I've had to learn the hard way. Lord's will, I'll get the technique down and be productive."
As for Richardson, he admits he was surprised to be on the field when the Rams (No. 28 in the AP Pro32) and Colts kicked off at Indianapolis on Sunday.
"I'm a little surprised, yeah," said the 6-6, 319-pound Richardson. "They called me out there and I was ready."
As it turned out, Smith was probably on the field longer than Richardson against the Colts. Rams coach Jeff Fisher said each player will get an equal chance to earn the starting job.
"We're trying to keep it pretty much even," Fisher said. "Any time you create a competitive situation, you want to be able to evaluate if fairly. We're splitting the reps on the practice field. We haven't thought about how we'll go in a game per se. But, there's plenty of reps in the game."
Richardson said he was not promised anything when he signed with the Rams but a new start after spending time with the NFL team across the state.
"It's a new beginning," said Richardson, a former sixth-round pick who had started 32 straight games for Kansas City. "New offense, new head coach new whole management team. That was really appetizing when I thought about it.
"I came in here and they told me they wanted me to be an anchor and provide depth at the tackle position and that would be my role. There's always a chance to be a starter in this league. Chance of injury is 100 percent."
Smith said Richardson already has become something of a mentor for him.
"He's a great veteran," Smith said. "He's taught me a lot of things. I'm learning a lot of things from him."
Fisher said there is no timetable to select the starter.
"Each situation is different," Fisher said. "But you obviously want to make a decision sooner than later."
BEST OF MAXIM
ST. LOUIS Last year was quite the rookie season for Rams wide receiver Austin Pettis.
The third round draft pick out of Boise State didn't even dress until week three and then missed the final two games of the season as part of a four-game suspension for testing positive for a performance enhancing substance.
In between, he had 27 catches for 256 yards in 12 games and returned...
ST. LOUIS Rams fans hoped the arrival of new coach Jeff Fisher, a nice draft class, the return of several injured players and a few key free agent signings would mean a more competitive group and improvement on their 2-14 season a year ago.
But a day after losing 38-3 in their preseason opener to the Indianapolis Colts Sunday, Fisher may have brought back some ugly flashbacks to...
The St. Louis Rams are abandoning their plans for any future “home” games to be played in London. The franchise had agreed to play games in Wembley Stadium this season and in the next two years. The Rams will play in London this season but the club has declined to play overseas after this season. The club cites their current lease situation as one of the reasons for the change...
ST. LOUIS (AP) -- St. Louis Rams quarterback Sam Bradford says speculation he might need offseason ankle surgery is off-base.
Bradford missed six games with a high left ankle sprain last season, aggravating the injury a few times after being hurt in mid-October and sitting out the final three games. He brought up the injury after the team scrimmaged earlier this month when asked...
St. Louis Rams quarterback Sam Bradford says speculation he might need offseason ankle surgery is off-base.
Bradford missed six games with a high left ankle sprain last season, aggravating the injury a few times after being hurt in mid-October and sitting out the final three games. He brought up the injury after the team scrimmaged earlier this month when asked generically how he...
The great thing about the NFL is that there are so many positions that every year, there is almost always at least one player who has a breakout year on every team, no matter how good or bad the team is. This is one part in a 32 part segment detailing one potential breakout player for the 2012 NFL season on each NFL team. For the St. Louis Rams, that player is defensive end Robert...
We are under the one month window before the 2012 NFL season, which has all of our writers here at The Waiver Wire gearing up for another year of debates, poorly made bets and trash-talking. This year, we’ve decided to break down the season-to-be division by division. We will preview all eight divisions and pick our division winners, likely wild cards for both the AFC and NFC...
According to Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com, St. Louis Rams quarterback Sam Bradford may need to undergo offseason ankle surgery. There is the chance that just resting his ankle after the season will help.
“Sam Bradford will never be fully healthy this season. That’s an established reality for the potential superstar quarterback. His ankle is not 100 percent, he...
ST. LOUIS His motor rumbles, because James Laurinaitis chase knows no end. His motor rumbles, because the St. Louis Rams linebacker knows no other way, the passion part of his pursuit as he grows in his career.
The motor is physical: Tight end Lance Kendricks catches a pass in the middle of a practice field early in a training camp session Wednesday at Rams Park. Laurinaitis hones...