After getting bombarded with untimely injuries at defensive tackle the last week of what had been a relatively injury-free preseason, the Rams got shell-shocked to an extreme on their offensive line in Week One, losing both starting C Scott Wells (fractured foot) and starting OLT Rodger Saffold (back).
A few days after the costly body blows to Wells, who is expected to be out until at least midseason, and Saffold, who we hear will probably miss the next couple of games after initially looking like he was very seriously hurt, the O-line was shot with another bullet when starting rookie OLG Rokevious Watkins’ status became very iffy for the Week Two home opener vs. Washington because of a sudden ankle injury that seemed to come out of the blue.
As a result, one week into the season, the Rams will definitely have two new starters on the offensive line (Robert Turner replacing Wells and ex-Jet Wayne Hunter replacing Saffold), and possibiy three, with newly re-signed Quinn Ojinnaka likely to replace Watkins.
“It’s just been a terrible start here in St. Louis for Wells,” one team insider said. “The good thing is that Turner was able to get in synch with (QB) Sam Bradford as the center in place of Wells, who was still recovering from knee surgery most of the offseason. Turner is not as physically strong as Wells, but he’s a very smart, technically sound player.”
Hunter, meanwhile, must at least temporarily adjust to playing on the left side after playing only right tackle up to now in his pro career.