2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Saffold adjusts to playing right guard for Rams

By WARREN MAYES - Associated Press
    2013-11-22 16:27

ST. LOUIS (AP) - Rodger Saffold is open to change, to say the least.

He began his NFL career as the St. Louis Rams' left tackle, then made room for Jake Long and moved to the right side to start this season. Now he will make his second start at right guard in place of injured Harvey Dahl against the Chicago Bears on Sunday.

At 6-foot-5, 314 pounds, Saffold hasn't played guard since middle school in Cleveland.

''I was in the seventh grade playing for the Heskett Hornets the last time I was a guard,'' Saffold said Friday after practice. ''Then I went to tackle and had been there ever since until now.''

Saffold, the 33rd pick overall in the 2010 Draft, started at right guard in the Rams' 38-8 victory over Indianapolis. He will be there against Sunday against the visiting Bears as St. Louis comes off its bye week.

The talent Saffold has made the adjustment possible, Rams coach Jeff Fisher said.

''When you've got athletic ability, which he does, and strength and power and foot agility, it's a matter of just learning what to do,'' Fisher said. ''Just get in the book and understand it. You play one position with a very good understanding of what your buddy does next to you, so that's very helpful.''

It's been a difficult journey this season for Saffold. He suffered a knee injury in Week 2 against Atlanta. Backup tackle Joe Barksdale filled in well for Saffold while he recovered. Saffold missed four games.

Saffold was unable to wrest his starting job back when he returned in Week 7 for the game against Carolina. The two tackles rotated in the next three games at right tackle. Dahl hurt his knee in the loss to Seattle on Oct. 28. Shelley Smith started in Dahl's place against Tennessee.

In the following game against Indianapolis, Fisher decided to move Saffold to guard. Fisher was pleased with what he saw in the victory over the Colts.

''Well, I thought he did a great job, obviously, in the game against Indianapolis,'' Fisher said. ''I think the bye week certainly helped to get him more comfortable with it, but doing a good job. You talk about a guy with great hip flexibility, the ability to bend and strike people.

''He's doing really, really well, so very pleased with where he's at. Again, the bye week and this week's been good for him just getting more and more comfortable.''

Saffold, who wears Orlando Pace's old number, is set for unrestricted free agency after this season. He had been the left tackle before the Rams made a big free agent signing in the offseason to get Long to play the position. Saffold switched to the right side.

The decision to switch Saffold to guard was made to get the five best linemen on the field.

''They were just like basically, `Hey, we want you to play guard so we can get everybody on the field,''' Saffold said. ''I try to do what I can to help the team win.''

So Saffold is a guard after 37 starts at tackle in his four seasons with the Rams.

''This is a new challenge,'' Saffold said. ''Everything is going real well. I'm getting a lot of help from (center) Scott Wells. I get advice from Harvey, too, so that makes it a lot easier for me.''

Saffold was agreeable to move around the line, offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer said.

''Absolutely, he's been great,'' Schottenheimer said. ''I think he likes it in there and we all just want to find a way to win.''

The difference from tackle to guard is one of space, Saffold said. The area is more confined. He compared it to being in a phone booth.

The speed is different on the interior of the line, too. Things happen faster, Saffold said.

''Playing guard is tougher than it looks,'' Saffold said. ''I have a lot of respect for what Harvey Dahl and (left guard) Chris Williams do. I just want to keep getting better.''

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

DeAngelo WilliamsOct 1 09:33a

Carolina Panthers RB DeAngelo Williams (ankle) has his right foot and ankle in a cast Wednesday, Oct. 1.

Donald BrownOct 1 09:23a

The San Diego Chargers ran just 20 times for 42 yards in Week 4 against the Jacksonville Jaguars for a measly 2.1 yards per carry. After four games this [ More ]

Teddy BridgewaterOct 1 09:18a

Minnesota Vikings QB Teddy Bridgewater (ankle) is feeling 'much better' Tuesday, Sept. 30, and head coach Mike Zimmer remains hopeful that Bridgewater can play in Week 5 against the [ More ]

Eric WinstonOct 1 07:13a

The Atlanta Falcons worked out free-agent FS M.D. Jennings, SS Chris D. Clemons and OL Eric Winston Tuesday, Sept. 30. ESPN analyst Ed Werder confirmed the workout of Winston, [ More ]

Brandon BrownerOct 1 06:43a

The New England Patriots reinstated CB Brandon Browner and WR Brian Tyms from the suspended list Tuesday, Sept. 30. They each have a roster exemption that expires Monday, Oct. 6.

Marqise LeeSep 30 11:13p

Jacksonville Jaguars WR Marqise Lee (hamstring) is going through the team's return-to-play protocol and could return to practice this week.

Toby GerhartSep 30 11:03p

Jacksonville Jaguars RB Denard Robinson will continue to be involved in a rotation at running back with RB Toby Gerhart, and head coach Gus Bradley said the team strongly [ More ]

Navorro BowmanSep 30 09:13p

San Francisco 49ers LB Michael Wilhoite has started for LB NaVorro Bowman (knee) in all four games this season, and Bowman said he has been impressed by his replacement. [ More ]

Larry DonnellSep 30 09:03p

New York Giants TE Larry Donnell is on pace to finish the year with 100 catches, 944 yards and 16 touchdowns. The single-season record for touchdowns by a tight end is currently 17.

Bruce CarterSep 30 06:53p

Dallas Cowboys LB Bruce Carter's (quadriceps) will reportedly need 10-14 days for his strained right quadriceps to heal, assuring he will miss Week 5 against the Houston Texans.

Brandon HepburnSep 30 06:43p

The Philadelphia Eagles released LB Brandon Hepburn and OT Tyler Hoover Tuesday, Sept. 30.

Gabe MillerSep 30 06:33p

The Washington Redskins re-signed LB Gabe Miller and DT Robert Thomas to their practice squad Tuesday, Sept. 30.

Chris BoswellSep 30 06:33p

The Houston Texans released PK Chris Boswell Tuesday, Sept. 30.

Mario ManninghamSep 30 06:13p

The New York Giants released WR Mario Manningham (calf) from their Reserve/Injured list with an injury waiver Tuesday, Sept. 30.

Joe McKnightSep 30 06:13p

The Kansas City Chiefs placed RB Joe McKnight (Achilles') on Reserve/Injured Tuesday, Sept. 30.

Terrell ManningSep 30 06:03p

The Chicago Bears placed LB Terrell Manning and WR Rashad Ross on no-recall waivers Tuesday, Sept. 30.

Montell OwensSep 30 05:53p

The Detroit Lions placed RB Montell Owens (hamstring) on Reserve/Injured and signed RB George Winn from their practice squad Tuesday, Sept. 30.

LaMichael JamesSep 30 05:43p

The Miami Dolphins signed free-agent RB LaMichael James (49ers) Tuesday, Sept. 30.

Jerick McKinnonSep 30 05:03p

Minnesota Vikings RB Jerick McKinnon (ankle) was limited in practice again Tuesday, Sept. 30.

Jarrett BoykinSep 30 05:03p

Green Bay Packers LB Sam Barrington (hamstring), DT Josh Boyd (knee) and WR Jarrett Boykin (groin) did not practice Tuesday, Sept. 30. LB Brad Jones (quadriceps) was limited, while [ More ]

Chad GreenwaySep 30 05:03p

Minnesota Vikings LB Chad Greenway (hand/rib) did not practice Tuesday, Sept. 30. CBs Captain Munnerlyn (illness) and Josh Robinson (hamstring) were limited. FB Jerome Felton (knee), LB Michael Mauti [ More ]

Jadeveon ClowneySep 30 04:53p

Houston Texans LB Jadeveon Clowney (knee) began running Tuesday, Sept. 30, as part of his rehabilitation process. He said the rehab process is coming along well and that he [ More ]

William MooreSep 30 04:03p

Atlanta Falcons SS William Moore (shoulder) will be placed on the short-term Reserve/Injured list, according to head coach Mike Smith.

Joe HawleySep 30 04:03p

Atlanta Falcons C Joe Hawley (knee) was diagnosed with a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his knee, according to a league source. C Peter Konz will now be the [ More ]

Victor ButlerSep 30 03:43p

The Arizona Cardinals released LB Victor Butler Tuesday, Sept. 30.

Teddy BridgewaterSep 30 02:33p

Minnesota Vikings QB Teddy Bridgewater (ankle) isn't practicing for the second straight day Tuesday, Sept. 30.

Tony SparanoSep 30 02:13p

The Oakland Raiders named Tony Sparano interim head coach Tuesday, Sept. 30.

Joe HawleySep 30 02:13p

Atlanta Falcons C Joe Hawley (knee) and OT Lamar Holmes (foot) were placed on the Reserve/Injured list Tuesday, Sept. 30.

Tommy BohanonSep 30 02:03p

New York Jets FB Tommy Bohanon (collarbone) will have surgery for a broken collarbone, and will be placed on the team's Reserve/Injured list.

Uche NwaneriSep 30 02:03p

Atlanta Falcons C Joe Hawley (knee) could be dealing with a season-ending injury to his right knee, according to a league source. The Falcons will work out free-agent OG [ More ]

Matt AsiataSep 30 01:53p

Minnesota Vikings RB Jerick McKinnon ran for 135 yards on 18 carries in the team's Week 4 win over the Atlanta Falcons, but head coach Mike Zimmer is hesitant [ More ]

Ben TateSep 30 01:23p

Cleveland Browns RB Ben Tate (knee) returned to practice Tuesday, Sept. 30, for the first time since spraining his right knee in the season opener Sept. 7. It means [ More ]

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group