Under coach Jeff Fisher and since the new collective bargaining agreement in 2011, the Rams have taken their time to a degree in signing their draft picks. There is little suspense to signing draft picks these days, with all of the money basically slotted by draft position.
But on Thursday, the Rams let it be known that they have signed all 11 players from their 2014 draft class. Tony Pastoors, senior assistant to executive vice president Kevin Demoff, did the legwork on getting the players signed.
All of the contracts were signed Thursday afternoon following the team's OTA practice session. The Rams also announced all of their draft signings en masse a year ago at about this time.
"With the new rookie cap and everything, it's really not difficult to get the deals done," Fisher said earlier in the week. "So we just felt like this time (before signing the picks) would be better served putting them in situations from an educational standpoint, financial planning, and those kinds of things. We've done a lot of that."
Quarterback Sam Bradford got extensive work in Thursday's OTA session at Rams Park, participating in two 7-on-7 periods _ one of which was an extensive period _ as well as an 11-on-11 two-minute drill. He threw TD passes to Tavon Austin and Austing Pettis during the 7-on-7 red zone period. But he threw an interception in the face of a blitz on a pass intended for Stedman Bailey during 11-on-11. Janoris Jenkins came up with the INT, for what would have been a "pick six."
Later in the practice, after Bradford was done for the day, DE Michael Sam almost intercepted a short pass intended for Tavon Austin in the flat. As it was, Sam had to settle for a pass breakup, earning praise from assistant head coach Dave McGinnis.
TE Alex Bayer, the undrafted rookie from Bowling Green, had an impressive day as a pass catcher. The Rams thought enough of Bayer to give him a $10,000 signing bonus and he could be in the running for the fourth tight end spot along with Justice Cunningham and Mason Brodine.
WR Kenny Britt made a nice diving catch near the sideline Thursday despite tight coverage from CB Brandon McGee.
Another highlight play came when safety T.J. McDonald broke up what looked like it was going to be a back-shoulder catch by TE Jared Cook in the red zone.
Rams left tackle Jake Long and wife Jackie have donated $1 million to help build a youth summer camp for North Star Reach in Michigan.
"My wife and I are part of a capital campaign committee," Long said. "We're building a summer camp for kids with serious health conditions that otherwise won't be able to go to camp.
"We had our first gala last weekend and had Sam (Bradford) and James (Laurinaitis) come up. We raised almost a half a million dollars. My wife and I donated a million to it. So it's a really great cause."
And a great gesture by the Longs.
Coaches from about 40 high schools took part in Fisher's annual coaching clinic Thursday following the day's Rams practice.
The Rams have four OTAs remaining next week, two of which are open to the media, before breaking for the summer.