So far, the St. Louis Rams have had several things to be relieved about. The most notable being that first overall pick QB Sam Bradford signed a contract and reported to camp in time for the first full squad practice and human highlight reel Steven Jackson was back in action after off season back surgery. There's still one issue hanging over the team as they wrap up their third day of practice: Jason Smith's toe injury.
Last year's first round pick, the second overall player selected in the draft, has yet to practice at full speed with the rest of the team. Smith is out recovering from a stress fracture to his toe suffered in the team's spring workouts. He's technically cleared, but remains limited in practice.
A toe injury is nothing to laugh about for a 300 lbs lineman who uses his feet pretty regularly. The Rams are treating it as a "day-to-day" injury.
Normally, one could shrug that off. However, injuries haunt the Rams. Smith missed time with two injuries last season; the second, a concussion, kept him out for the rest of the season after week 11, right as he was really hitting his stride.
One of the most notable developments at camp thus far is this year's second round pick, Rodger Saffold, working at left tackle, the spot most assumed belonged to Jason Smith. There's wisdom in the Rams approach to testing out Saffold on the blind side and the general theory of versatile players at key positions (like the linebackers). Spagnuolo also needs to know his options since the presumptive left tackle has so far spent more time on the injury report than the field.
Three injuries in the span of a year can get a player labeled "injury-prone" no matter how healthy they been prior to that. Fans, coaches and front office types alike will find it hard to breath easy until Smith is back on the field, pads on and playing at full speed...even then it would be more comforting to see him get a few games under his belt.