The rookie class is going to be playing a larger role for the St. Louis Rams in the second half of the season.
St. Louis Rams can expect to see more from Isaiah Pead in the weeks ahead. Head coach Jeff Fisher acknowledged after Tuesday's practice that the second-round pick would have the ball in his hands more going forward.
"Yeah, it was good," Fisher said of Pead's work in the last game when he carried the ball three times for 32 yards.
"We're going to continue to try to get him some touches - it makes sense. You're playing in an NFL game, you're playing against NFL players, and for him to flash like that - regardless of the situation and status in the game - I thought was pretty impressive."
Obviously, that means a mix of carries between Pead and Daryl Richardson and Steven Jackson. Truth be told, the Rams could probably stand to run the ball more. The Rams are averaging 25.1 rushing attempts per game, ranked 23rd. They have 201 total rushing attempts, and only seven teams have fewer.
Rookie receiver Chris Givens is probably going to be seeing some more balls thrown his way. His 13 catches are fifth on the team, but his 333 yards are the third-most and his two receiving touchdowns are tied for the team lead. Those extra targets aren't just going to come on go routes either.
"Well, he's made the big plays for us," Fisher said of Givens. "We'd like to continue to keep him more involved. We're thinking that the big plays should create opportunities for him underneath as well. Thirteen catches is not a lot of catches, but when you take into consideration the long ones, he's been productive. Like the rest of the group, we want to get them more involved in the offense."
Getting Givens clicking on those underneath routes will make him more than just a one-dimensional player. With his speed and explosiveness, Givens do some damage matched up against slower linebackers in the middle.
The Rams don't really have much choice but to get the rookies more involved in the offense. The team has to do something to jump start one of the league's least productive scoring units. With the playoffs out of reach, more reps for the rookies would also get the first-year players on track for a bigger role in year two, or at least let the coaching staff figure out which players can contribute more in 2013.