With their first full-squad workout, the Rams opened training camp late Thursday afternoon before a large and enthusiastic crowd at Rams Park in Earth City.
"The crowd was great today; just gives you a little extra juice when you're out here,'' middle linebacker James Laurinaitis said. "Sometimes they cheer when it's a 3-yard completion... but it's an exciting time right now. The fans feel it, the players feel it, the community feels it and it's great to be a part of that.''
Heck, the football-hungry crowd, which numbered 1,755, even cheered as the Rams wrapped up their pre-practice stretching.
"It was great. I looked out the window an hour-and-a-half before practice and they were already starting to come out,'' coach Jeff Fisher said. "It was good to see them and hopefully that'll continue.''
Upcoming practice schedule
Rams workouts Friday (3:30 p.m.) and Saturday (5:30 p.m.) are free and open to the public.
• Players not practicing Thursday were TE Lance Kendricks (knee), DB Matt Daniels (knee), DE Jermelle Cudjo (foot), OL Barrett Jones (foot), OL Braden Brown (back) and TE Phillip Lutzenkirchen.
Kendricks, Daniels and Jones did work out with team trainners.
Kendricks, Daniels and Cudjo are on the active physically unable to perform list, while Jones is on the non-football injury list since he was hurt while playing at the University of Alabama.
All of the injured players are on the 90-man roster and can return to practice as soon as they are healthy and cleared to play.
• After sitting out much of the spring OTAs, fourth-year safety Darian Stewart was with the starting unit alongside rookie T.J. McDonald.
• In a span of just a few plays during seven-on-seven drills midway through practice, Sam Bradford hit on over-the-top pass plays to rookie wideouts Tavon Austin and Stedman Bailey.
Austin was chosen with the No. 8 pick in the NFL draft while West Viriginia teammate Bailey went in the third round.
• Laurinaitis pointed out that the Rams' offense is much tougher to defend than it was a year ago because of its added speed and roster flexibility.
• Coaches from Westminster Christian and Belleville West were on the sideline taking in Thursday's workout.