St. Louis Rams Training Camp: Rodger Saffold Going Back To Basics

ST. LOUIS - NOVEMBER 21: Rodger Saffold #76 of the St. Louis Rams is introduced prior to playing against the Atlanta Falcons at the Edward Jones Dome on November 21 2010 in St. Louis Missouri. The Falcons beat the Rams 34-17. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)

Reports from the St. Louis Rams' first practice with pads on Thursday were not exactly glowing when it came to the offensive line. That has to be a huge concern for the team given the unit's struggles in recent seasons. Nevertheless, the news about the front five was not all bad.

Left tackle Rodger Saffold is healthy and back in action, a positive start for a player that struggled last season. He also dedicated himself to his craft during the offseason. Head coach Jeff Fisher took notice.

"The injury's completely behind him," Fisher said. "He's strong. He's really worked hard this offseason, with his feet, his balance and his technique and the injury's behind and he's doing just fine. He's got a couple pretty good rushers out there to work against every day."

Saffold allowed 11 sacks, four hits and 17 hurries last season, as part of a group that struggled to keep Bradford and the backups on their feet over the course of the Rams' 2-14 season.

Former NFL offensive lineman and Football Outsiders contributor Ben Muth wrote a piece on Saffold and the Rams' struggles last season that I've linked to before. One thing of note in Muth's assessment is that Saffold plays with a natural ability as a pass blocker. Ironing out his fundamentals and honing his craft could be an important step forward for the third-year tackle out of Indiana.

St. Louis' hopes rest heavily on Saffold's shoulders. The left tackle has plenty at stake personally as well. The Rams have a nice little cap budget for 2013 and two first-round picks in the draft. If Saffold cannot live up to expectations, the Rams can easily draft his replacement and move Saffold to the right side. He has two years left on his contract, starting left tackles make considerably more than their counterparts on the other side. Elevating his play could help bump him into a new tax bracket.

In This Article

Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Turf Show Times

You must be a member of Turf Show Times to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Turf Show Times. You should read them.

Join Turf Show Times

You must be a member of Turf Show Times to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Turf Show Times. You should read them.




Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.