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St. Louis Rams Conference Call

HEAD COACH STEVE SPAGNUOLO (on the Colts possibly taking the game against the Rams lightly) “I don’t think Jim Caldwell, his staff, the players, Peyton (Manning) included, will do that. I’d like them to do that.

HEAD COACH STEVE SPAGNUOLO (on the Colts possibly taking the game against the Rams lightly) * *

"I don't think Jim Caldwell, his staff, the players, Peyton (Manning) included, will do that. I'd like them to do that. They're too professional. They've had a week off. They're probably chomping at the bit. So, no, we don't expect a letdown by Indianapolis."

HEAD COACH STEVE SPAGNUOLO (on playing the Colts after they've had a bye week)

"Especially a bye with a quarterback like Peyton Manning, who we all know studies a team to a 'T'. To give him two weeks to prepare is awfully scary. But that's what it is. That's the way the schedule was made. We'll go out and play the game, but it certainly does give him a lot of opportunities to figure out what we're doing."


"He's been terrific. He has really, really developed. He's a lot further along than most rookies playing that position. What we ask him to do as a mike linebacker is quite a bit. The system is a little bit complex. Most of them are in this league. The guy in the middle of the defense has to make all those calls. He kind of just jumped right in, hasn't skipped a beat. The development of him, and the confidence the rest of the defense has in him is really a nice thing to watch as we've gone through OTA's, training camp and now into the season. He's gained the confidence and the respect of the defensive guys. That's what it takes as a rookie when you come in there, especially when you stand in front of the huddle and make all of the calls, but he's been terrific."


"It's not that long ago that Marc was going over to Hawaii for Pro Bowls. He's still a talented guy. He gets the ball out quick. (He's) a very, very accurate quarterback and very smart. There were even times in the game last week, and it wasn't even an offensive series, but he's into the game, and he's giving suggestions. He's a very smart football player, and I think every team needs that in their quarterback."

HEAD COACH STEVE SPAGNUOLO (on what the Rams can take out of last week's game at Jacksonville)

"The thing that was glaring in the second half, and you certainly wanted to win the football game and there are no moral victories, but in the second half in a tight game, on both sides of the ball, you have to win on third down. That's where we kind of stumbled a little bit. We didn't convert enough third downs on offense, which means we were off the field. Defensively, Jacksonville, to their credit, was converting on a bunch of third downs in the second half, which kept the defense on the field. So, when you looked at it, sat back and assessed the whole situation, the lesson I think we learned there is that you have to keep the ball on third down when you're on offense, and you have to get off the field on defense on third down. If we had done that, who knows, two, three, four times more than we had, maybe, just maybe, the outcome would have been a little bit different."


"We don't forget it because we see what he does everyday, and we see him on gameday. I don't know if you had a chance to see the screen pass we threw to him on the last drive of regulation (at Jacksonville) when we came down and kicked a field goal. He just kind of willed himself to a 40-yard gain, carrying three, four, five tacklers. That's Steve. He takes a lot of pride in that. He's a workhorse, wants the ball, and he leads this team. He's certainly the guy that we want to hang our hat on and do some good things. He's a very determined runner. He's a good football player."

LB-JAMES LAURINAITIS (on his rookie season)

"I'm not one to really reflect on how it's gone until this whole season is done with. I know each week I try to focus on getting the guys lined up and being held accountable and making the right checks on the field. If I can do that, if I can get all that done with no mental errors, that's a good Sunday."

LB-JAMES LAURINAITIS (on if the NFL is what he thought it would be)

"There are still moments, you go out there for a game and you're like, 'This is cool. I'm playing in the NFL, this is crazy.' Just little things too. Last week, the jets flying over the stadium, just little stuff like that doesn't happen every Saturday in college football. So, just kind of seeing cool stuff like that and getting to play against players that you've seen on TV. I'm 22 years old, and I'm still a huge football fan. So, playing against guys that I'm fans of and what they do on the football field is pretty cool stuff."


"It's really unbelievable what he is able to do. You watch film, and you can just see the kind of control he has, the patience. He always seems to get his team in the right play, and he makes it seem so easy and effortless when he does it. It's hard to simulate in practice. It's one of those things that you can't really simulate, how Peyton controls the game. You try to do one thing, and he's just going to do the other. That's just the way it is. He's that good at it. I know going into Sunday's game that no matter how much you try to practice at that, you don't really get the real thing until Sunday. This being my first time playing him, there is no experience, so the challenge is even greater."

LB-JAMES LAURINAITIS (on losing the first six games of his NFL career after only losing eight games his entire career in college)

"You don't try to think about it too much. You just kind of move on to the next week. This locker room really is united. There are no guys pointing at anybody else. We go out there, and you see a lot of players with a lot of heart, a lot of guys battling on the field. There are a few plays here and there, especially last week going into the overtime. These guys are just fighting. We do a good job on Wednesday practice of forgetting about it. We've already watched film. We've already tried to correct everything. Let's move forward to next week. That's all you can do in this situation. You have to just keep fighting."

LB-JAMES LAURINAITIS (on third downs against Jacksonville)

"We definitely had some opportunities on third down to get off the field, and we didn't. Whether it was pass interference penalties or just completions against us, no matter what it was, it wasn't good enough. You get a team to a third-down situation, you have to get off the field as a defense. You have to get off the field on third down, and we did a poor job of that last week."

LB-JAMES LAURINAITIS (on the possibility of the Colts taking the Rams lightly)

"This is their profession. You have first-class professionals. I think the reason that happens in college is because you have so many players in college and not all of them are 100% locked in. But when you have a team that is full of true professional guys, and they know how to play this game right, they know every Sunday you have to be glued in. That's something you learn if you're a true winner, and you're a guy that's a true player out there. You realize you have to take care of business every Sunday. Across this league everyone knows that any team can win on any Sunday. That's just kind of the way it is. We don't expect anybody to come into the (Edward Jones) Dome here and take anybody lightly. Not in this league. Teams are to good across the board, and you don't really see it happening across the league."

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