Quick Hoping to Make Most of Opportunities

Posted Dec 17, 2012

As Rams quarterback Sam Bradford approached the line of scrimmage at Minnesota’s 4 with 12:39 to go in the second quarter of Sunday’s game, he saw something he liked.

The Vikings had loaded up the line of scrimmage with defenders that appeared to be bent on stopping the run and back Steven Jackson. Bradford’s pre-snap read told him the Vikings were going to what’s known as “zero” coverage, leaving no help for any of the defensive backs and creating a series of one-on-one matchups on the outside.

One of those matchups left 6’3, 220 pound rookie wideout Brian Quick isolated against 5’10, 199 pound rookie cornerback Josh Robinson outside the right hash mark.

Bradford checked into a quick pass play and floated a perfect fade pattern to Quick, who scaled the ladder and brought in his second career touchdown catch as Robinson tried in vain to make up the size difference.

“We definitely checked down and I had to make the play,” Quick said. “He depended on me to make the play, every body did and being a young guy, you don’t get too many chances and I had to go up and make the play and I did. It felt great.”

The play was a perfect example of the type of thing the Rams envisioned when they used the No. 33 pick in the 2012 NFL Draft on the big, athletic wideout.

But attempts earlier in the season to get Quick more involved in the red zone hadn’t always gone their way, leaving his chances few and far between. A couple of jump balls for Quick had even turned into turnovers that killed Rams’ drives deep in opponents’ territory.

So being able to stick the landing and come up with an alley-oop had even more meaning to Quick. 

“I came a long way,” Quick said. “I am coming and I am continuing to grow. It’s good to see some progress, just progressing and becoming better. I don’t need to take steps backwards, just take steps forward and become the best player I can be.”

With two games to go in his rookie season, Quick isn’t exactly counting on more repetitions than he’s been getting for most of the season though his snap count was up a bit to 26 on Sunday against the Vikings.

Quick’s usage will depend on the game plan in the final two contests, according to coach Jeff Fisher.

“He played quite a few snaps yesterday and made a couple plays,” Fisher said. “Really it depends on the game plan and what our approach is to try to beat an opponent.”
Regardless of the quantity of chances he gets in the final two games, Quick is hoping to take full advantage of those opportunities and forge a little momentum heading into his first full NFL offseason.

“I’m just going to do my job,” Quick said. “I would definitely look forward to it but I am just going to do my job, whatever it takes to help the team. If it’s one play at the goal line and catch a fade, that’s what I’m going to do so I just need to do what I need to do when my number is called.”

Especially if that number is called a bit more in red zone situations such as Sunday’s. 

“That’s how you learn,” Quick said. “That’s exactly how you learn. You do things every day and it starts to get easier. You prepare hard and study and do the things needed.”

DAHL SET FOR SURGERY: Immediately after Sunday’s game against Minnesota, Fisher indicated that he believed right guard Harvey Dahl had suffered a serious biceps injury that would likely end his season with two games left to play.

On Monday, Fisher confirmed that the Rams’ fears were indeed correct and Dahl would miss the last two games with a torn biceps tendon in his left arm.

Dahl will undergo surgery for the injury on Wednesday.

“We will be placing him on injured reserve,” Fisher said. “We don’t know what we will do with the roster spot yet.”

Shelley Smith replaced Dahl at right guard on Sunday but Fisher indicated that the competition for the spot could be a little more open or the job could possibly even become a time share in the season’s final two weeks. 

“We do know that we’ve got the potential for possibly Shelley and/or Chris Williams battling it out for that spot here the last couple of weeks,” Fisher said. “There’s a potential that they both play.”

Dahl started all 14 of the team’s previous games and had proved one of the few linemen the team has been able to rely on consistently since he signed with the Rams before the 2011 season.

Fisher said the rehabilitation time for Dahl’s injury is three or four months.

“He was very, very durable week in and week out, dependable,” Fisher said. “He’s the kind of guy you want on your offensive line. He finishes plays, he’s tough. He just battles every play. We will miss him for the next couple of weeks but he’ll find his way back.”

HARKEY STEPS IN: To most of the players on the field with 2:33 to go in a two-score game, it probably didn’t mean much but the 21-yard strike Bradford fired to the right side that was hauled in by rookie tight end Cory Harkey certainly meant something.

It was Harkey’s first NFL catch after being promoted from the practice squad to the active roster on Nov. 17 to replace released defensive tackle Kellen Heard.

Harkey played 11 snaps for the Rams against the Vikings and slowly but surely is finding a way to contribute in a number of areas.

“He was given the opportunity here,” Fisher said. “He’s done a good job. He’s made a few tackles on special teams the last couple of weeks. He knows what to do. He’s doing a respectable job blocking against some good opponents and he can get to where he needs to get to in the passing game.”