Aug 15, 2013
FORT COLLINS, Colo. - For their 11th practice of fall, Mother Nature provided the Rams with their warmest practice yet. Temperatures reached the high 80s but it wasn't hot enough for Head Coach Jim McElwain.
"You want to try and practice during the heat of the day and try to get the guys to fight through and get an idea of what it's all about," McElwain said.
McElwain was hesitant to admit that he expected his guys to come out slow as they approach the midpoint of fall but he was surprised.
"I might have had the expectation today that we might need to get them going but I really saw some guys step up," McElwain said. "Before, some guys might have said, `this might not be for me.' I saw some guys step up and take control. In the competitive drills is where I liked it. I saw some guys digging down deep and overcoming the mind."
The second-year coach was also happy with the situational work the Rams got done on Thursday.
"They came out with the right attitude," McElwain said. "We had some pretty good situational work on both sides of the ball. For the most part, for practice 11, in full pads, in the middle of the day, I thought we got some good work done.
The Rams will practice twice on Friday as the Rocky Mountain Showdown is only 17 days away.
Fall Camp Notebook:
Guests: Over 70 first responders from all over Northern Colorado came out to Thursday's practice as special guests of the Rams.
"It goes back to the `One Town,'" McElwain said, referencing the 2013 team slogan 'One town, one team, one dream.' "These are guys that are helping all of us on a daily basis. This is a little something that we could give them. They put their lives on the line every day for us, and it's just a way for us to give back and say thank you for all you do."
Red jersey: "For the most part we've had a pretty good, injury-free camp. Again, I think there is a correlation to how hard they worked in the offseason and a credit to the guys in the strength and conditioning room," McElwain said.
Linebacker Max Morgan is ahead of schedule and McElwain expects him to "get back in some drills by the middle of next week."
Defensive tackle Calvin Tonga has a minor leg injury but is day-to-day.
Last off the field: Kicker Jared Roberts and long snapper Tanner Hedstrom spent 15 minutes after practice working on their field goal execution. Additionally, Shaq Bell, Kivon Cartwright, Trent Matthews, Robert Ruiz and Willie Udofia spent time playing toss with tennis balls (improves their hand-eye coordination) and on the jugs machine.
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