The Rams held a light, non-padded session at Cal Lutheran on Friday morning to cap off their week of preparation for Jacksonville. The team will travel to Florida in Week 6, before flying across the pond to face off the Cardinals in Week 7.
After suffering from a hamstring injury in the team's Week 2 contest against the Redskins, safety Lamarcus Joyner is questionable for the second game in a row on Sunday. After returning to the field on Wednesday afternoon, Joyner said he "felt okay," during the session, but was admittedly "a little rusty."
"I have to get back into the groove, he said. "I'm going through the process, I'm progressing, getting better, and that's all that matters at this point right now."
Linebacker Mark Barron is also questionable for Sunday's contest with a knee injury. After he did not participate in both Wednesday and Thursday's practices, he was a limited participant on Friday. Although defensive coordinator Wade Phillips said he expects Barron to be ready this weekend, linebacker Cory Littleton will take his place should he not be able to play.
Cornerback Troy Hill was the last Rams' player listed on the injury report with a shoulder injury. He is doubtful to take the field in Week 6.
In Jacksonville, the Jaguars could be without one of their starters on the offensive line as left guard Patrick Omameh is questionable for Sunday's contest with a hip injury. According to the Jaguars' depth chart, Tyler Shatley will be the one to take his place on the O-line if he is unable to play. Wide receiver Arrelious Benn is also questionable with a groin injury, while center Brandon Linder was ruled out with an illness.
OGLETREE: "IT'S A COMMITMENT ON BOTH SIDES"
On Thursday, the Rams signed middle linebacker Alec Ogletree to a four-year contract extension. Ogletree is not only a key player on field — where he leads the Rams with 54 total tackles, including 30 solo stops — but the former Georgia standout is also an example to his teammates off the field.
"Since I got here, my exposure to Alec has been as one of the more influential players in this locker room," head coach Sean McVay said. "He always goes about his business the right way and he brings people with him. You always talk about what the true sign of a great leader is — it's not only being a great player, but making people around you better as well."
Ogletree was drafted by the Rams as the No. 30 overall pick in the 2013 draft. Even in his first year as a Ram, Ogletree had an immediate impact on field. During the 2013 season, he set the league record for the longest return by a rookie linebacker in history with a 98-yard pick-six against the Texans.
Since then Ogletree has remained a staple on the Rams defense, leading the team in tackles in three of his four seasons. By signing his contract extension, Ogletree said he was eager to build a legacy for himself here in Los Angeles.
"It's a commitment on both sides," Ogletree said Friday. "As an organization, they are committed to me and it's me committing to them to want to be here, stay here and stay along for the ride."
"We weren't always the best of teams for the past couple of years, but this year we have a whole new coaching staff and a lot of new guys, and I really like it," he continued. "I enjoy it and that was a big factor of why I resigned. Definitely excited and committed to being here."
McVay also expressed that same excitement, calling Ogletree "a high character guy who raises the level of play around him."
"He's the epitome of what we're looking for in terms of the players that you want to build around," he said. "I'm very happy for Alec and we're excited to see him get locked up as a Ram for a long time to come."
A TAXING 10 DAYS AHEAD
The Week 6 contest against the Jaguars in Jacksonville will mark the first of two consecutive road games for Los Angeles. After Sunday's game ends, the Rams will remain in Florida for four days before travelling overseas to London for an NFC West matchup with the Cardinals.
Though the trip through two different time zones will undoubtedly be tough for the entire team, McVay says he looks at the trip as an advantage, giving them the opportunity to "travel as a team and stay connected."
"It's not something that we're ever going to make an excuse for," he said. "Whether our routine is off a little bit, we stick to our same routine. We have an opportunity to go travel together, and our first goal is to try to go win against an excellent Jacksonville Jaguars football team on Sunday. Then we will worry about what's after that."
Last year, the Rams faced off against the Giants in London and spent the whole week in England to adjust to their environment. This year, however, the team will take a more gradual approach to adjust.
"It's just harder to get accustomed to it because you lose a lot of sleep, you don't really know when to sleep and when to stay up," left guard Rodger Saffold said. "Now we get to gradually take it, getting used to East Coast time and then London time."
"You certainly take the players' input and feedback into account. You also draw on some of your previous experiences," McVay said of the decision to travel later in the week. "When I was in Washington last year, we traveled on that Thursday to go play Cincinnati in London and we felt like that was a pretty seamless transition, as seamless as it can get when you're adjusting with that time zone change. That's what we're going to try to do."