On offense, Quinn Ojinnaka currently has the edge at left guard. But Bryan Mattison remains in the mix, and rookie Rokevious Watkins - now that he's practicing after reporting to camp out of shape - could eventually work his way into the picture as well. At fullback, Ovie Mughelli is still learning the offense but is expected to challenge Brit Miller.
One week of camp hasn't brought much clarity to the wide receiver position. While it's foolhardy to make sweeping generalizations one week into camp, nonetheless it's debatable at this point whether the Rams have done enough to upgrade the position.
So where is the offense at this point - one week in?
“It's kind of hard to tell,” Jackson said. “We're still actually putting in plays. Still working the chemistry between the offensive line and myself and the other guys in the starting lineup. And you still have guys competing for starting jobs. So it's hard to tell where we are. But the progress we've made has been tremendous. A lot of it has carryover from the spring.”
On defense, Craig Dahl and Darian Stewart are going at it once again for a starting safety job. Dahl has the slight edge now, in part because Stewart has missed the last three practices with a tight hamstring. Before all is said and done, Rocky McIntosh could challenge Mario Haggan at outside linebacker. But this unit - at this point - appears more game-ready than the offense.
Obviously, injuries could change the landscape. Surprises could still emerge - one already has to a degree in undrafted rookie defensive tackle Matt Conrath.
“We see some potential there,” Fisher said. “He has a chance to be a pretty good football player.”
But Fisher cautioned: “The process is evaluating them in the games; that's where you get a better sense.”
And the games are less than a week away.
)2012 St. Louis Post-Dispatch
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