The Los Angeles Rams Fanfest at the L.A. Memorial Coliseum was a success, as far as coach Jeff Fisher is concerned. The approximately 25,000 fans that joined the Rams at the Coliseum no doubt agree.
After the scrimmage Fisher spoke to the media. He started his press conference saying, “Alright, well that was fun. That was great. This actually will conclude that first difficult phase of training camp. You couldn’t think of a better way than to do it here, in front of the fans and in this environment. It was just really, really, really fun. Players had a blast.”
The team had a day off on Sunday, because, as Fisher pointed out, they earned it. “I saw good things from everybody. We stayed healthy and what we would consider to be somewhat of a physical practice, so we stayed healthy. We got in great work, so they got a day off tomorrow,” he told the media.
He likes having the fans at their practices and those at the Coliseum made the experience special for Fisher. “Walking down the tunnel for some of these guys, for the first time was a cool experience for them. Thinking that ‘this is going to be home for a while,’ so let’s make the most of it, and let’s make it a hard place to play.”
For Fisher, who played at USC and played and coached some NFL games in the Coliseum, it was coming home. In the team’s first press conference in January he talked about coming to the L.A. Coliseum to watch the Los Angeles Rams as a kid. On Saturday he spoke of that again, pointing out where he and his family sat for those games.
“I told you guys, dad brought me out here and I sat way up there when I was about seven years old, and it was one of the greatest experiences of my life. To be able to have the opportunity to play here in college and then come back on numerous occasions during my NFL career was really cool. But this is really, really fun, really fun for me. Great memories here, and we just want to carry on that winning tradition.”
Invariably someone asks about the Rams’ number one pick, Jared Goff. Causing the assembled media to laugh a bit, “Fisher said, “I can’t believe I didn’t bring up Jared to start with. So, I don’t know if you saw the two-minute drill, but that stuff was real. He was locked in, focused, and he knew exactly where the play clock was, game clock, timeouts, everything. He had a good day today – you know, finish up the week on a really good note and now he can get his mind right for next weekend.”
Goff has been taking reps with the first team already, but Fisher reiterated Case Keenum is the starting quarterback and Goff will have to earn his way into the top spot.
Fisher said things went really well, with the logistics and technology now being used to communicate, from the coaches to the leaders on the field. As usual, Jeff Fisher was very ebullient.
Running back Todd Gurley enjoyed the day as well. He told the media, ““We were just excited being able to play at home for the first time and then have Family Day and fans come. Everybody was a little amped up.”
He echoed the remarks of Coach Fisher, saying, “We most definitely got better today. It was a great day of work, especially for the offense. We were able to get some of those red zone scores and some of those goal-line runs, which we really need to put points on the board. It felt like offense and defense — we all got better today.”
Gurley likes the new receivers that are in camp: Nelson Spruce, Duke Williams, Mike Thomas and Pharoh Cooper. His favorite might be “Baby Gronk,” Tyler Higbee. “Everybody’s been doing a great job, so we definitely see everybody getting better and better especially from OTAs to now,” he said.
Jared Goff had his moment in front of the microphones as well. He said, “I think everyday I’ve been trying to improve and slowly but surely, I feel like I’m getting better everyday. I would expect the next practice to be even better. I hope to get better just everyday — that’s really what I’m trying to do.”
He liked having the fans at the Coliseum as well. “It was awesome to see all the fans out here and how excited everyone is for us to be back in LA. It was just really cool, really exciting.”
He added, “I appreciate the fans here and everything they do. They’re a lot of fun. Right now, they are very happy to see us and hopefully we can keep it that way.”
Saturday wasn’t the first time Goff played at the Coliseum. “I am pretty comfortable with the Coliseum. I’ve played here once. Was here for the rookie premiere, so I am fairly comfortable with it. But, yeah, being on the field practicing is really cool. Expect it to be pretty packed when we have our first home opener here.”
Training Camp will continue with some open practices at the UC-Irvine facility. Fans are welcome Monday (August 8), Tuesday (August 9) and Thursday (August 11). For a complete list of their remaining open practices, Click Here.
And don’t forget: you could find yourself on TV. HBO is still filming for “Hard Knocks: Training Camp with the Los Angeles Rams.” It premiers Tuesday, August 9.
Photos by Claudia Gestro
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