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Foles taking charge of Rams

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EARTH CITY, Mo. — For St. Louis Rams quarterback Nick Foles, the last three months have been a whirlwind.

There was the shocking trade on March 10 that sent him to the Rams for quarterback Sam Bradford, followed by countless hours learning a new offense and new teammates.

Now, as the Rams opened their OTAs this week, he is on the field putting all that work to use.

“It’s exciting,” Foles said Thursday. “I was injured halfway through last season and just to be under center, it’s really a blessing. You never know what to expect. I didn’t expect to be injured. It’s just fun to be out here with these guys. We have a great quarterback room that’s really helping me along and helping me in the learning process. It’s just fun out here competing, making ourselves better.

“It’s a huge learning process and a huge relationship building process, but I’m really enjoying each day doing that.”

While knowing the offense is the obvious nuts and bolts of hoping to have any success, developing camaraderie among teammates is also crucial.

Said head coach Jeff Fisher, “That’s what he’s done since he got here. He walked in the door and he went out of his way to meet everybody. They did some individual things together. He took charge. In the phase one where the coaches can’t be present, he took the players out, the skill players and offensive players and threw and did those things. Since then, he’s been doing great. Everything that we heard is true, and I’m sure we’re going to be surprised as we move ahead with him because we’ve been really pleased.”

Asked if that relationship building is important, Foles said, “Absolutely. The way we’re going to be successful on Sunday, or whatever day we end up playing on, is the relationships. Come the fourth quarter, we have to know each other. We have to care about each other. That’s where you stick together through adversity. Just getting to know the guys in the workouts, in the film room, in the training room, whatever we do is a key part of it. I’ve really enjoyed it. We have a great group of guys here that love to work hard and love to have a good time.”

As for the challenges of building that trust, Foles said, “I really don’t think it’s a challenge. It’s just fun. It’s a day-to-day thing. It’s getting to know them. It’s getting to know who they are as people. It started in the weight room, lifting together, working out together, pushing each other on the run. Then when you’re going out here it’s just communicating. It’s all about communication.

“What they see on the routes, how they’re going to run their routes, what they see in the defenders. When I see my receivers run routes I can tell who’s good at what, so then you get an idea where to throw the ball to different guys. They’ve been awesome. The receivers have been awesome. They’re buying in. They’re working hard and they’re going to make some plays.”

Guard Rodger Saffold likes what he’s seen from Foles.

“He’s very boisterous, very up-tempo,” Saffold said. “He seems to be really excited about every day, about every opportunity, which is really good. He likes to uplift guys. You see him a lot around the locker room and hear him a lot on the field. It’s very inspiring, and that’s a good thing for us, especially with so many young guys. They need that.”

Of Foles, wide receiver Kenny Britt said, “We love him. He throws a great deep ball, puts it on the money every time. He can throw every pass in the book, every route tree.”

Last year, in his first season with the Rams, Britt was a guy that watched out for his teammates, always pushing guys to work. Now, Britt has been on the receiving end from Foles.

Britt said, “The chemistry has been great since day one. He’s a real guy. He goes in the locker room and pumps people up. If you’re down, he’s the first one to say, ‘You gotta go.’ It’s kind of exciting to see him in there and see how he works on and off the field.”

When it was mentioned to Britt that was the one to pump up the players, he laughed and said, “I know. But there were a couple days where I’ve been down on myself, not feeling well, and he’s the first one that comes to me and says, ‘I see it in your face. Let’s go. Can’t have that right now. It’s the start of a new season right now. Got to get it going.’ He’s the same as me, to tell you the truth.”


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