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Amendola Suffers Shoulder Injury

Posted Oct 4, 2012

After a spectacular start featuring a highlight reel catch, Rams receiver Danny Amendola’s Thursday night came to an abrupt and disappointing ending.

With 7:51 to go in the second quarter, Rams quarterback Sam Bradford rifled a pass down the right seam for Amendola, who leaped and appeared to come down with the ball. But he landed awkwardly on his shoulder and stayed down on the field.

Amendola never returned to the game with what is being called a right shoulder injury and was visibly frustrated on the telecast, throwing his helmet against the wall on his way to the locker room.

The extent of the injury won’t be known until Amendola goes through more tests on Friday morning but there’s little doubt that losing Amendola not only affected the Rams offense Thursday night but could have a long lasting effect if the injury keeps him out for any extended period of time.

“Obviously, losing Danny is big,” Bradford said. “Everyone knows that he’s a big part of our offense. A lot of what we do runs through him. From what I’ve heard, they don’t know anything for sure. Hopefully, the results of everything come back good tomorrow and he’s back with us.”

Amendola actually ignited a dynamic first drive with an insane one-handed, left-handed catch for a gain of 44 yards to help setup the Rams first touchdown.

Entering the game, Amendola was second in the league in receiving. With Amendola out, the Rams used various combinations of Brandon Gibson, Austin Pettis and rookies Chris Givens and Brian Quick.

INJURY REPORT: There’s no definitive proof that the short week had a direct impact on the injury front for the Rams on Thursday night but there’s no doubting that it certainly became an issue for them as the game went on.

In addition to Amendola, the Rams also lost safety Quintin Mikell and linebacker Mario Haggan to injuries during the game. Mikell suffered a head injury but tweeted after the game that he’d be OK. Haggan has a thigh injury.

There were also some bumps and bruises along the way as guard Quinn Ojinnaka suffered what appeared to be an ankle injury late that brought Shelley Smith in at left guard. Fullback Brit Miller had a hand injury but played through it.

With extra time to recover following the short week, coach Jeff Fisher hopes his team can recover.

“We put the short-week concept behind us this afternoon and we talked about trying to find a way to win the game and enjoy the long week ahead, so we’re going to need that because we’ve got a few guys banged up,” Fisher said.

JACKSON’S FUTURE: Before the game, news broke that Rams running back Steven Jackson actually had his contract – which had another year on it – reworked before the beginning of the regular season.

The contract alteration allows Jackson to opt out of the final year of his deal in 2013 though he also could opt to stay in St. Louis under the terms of the original deal.

After rushing for 76 yards on 18 carries, Jackson, who has long maintained that he wants to finish his career in St. Louis where it started, said he has not had any sort of change of heart on the matter.

“It’s a part of the business,” Jackson said. “I’ve said that from the beginning that, even in 2004, I wanted to retire here. This organization gave me the opportunity to live out a dream. In 2008 they extended me and at the end of the season we’ll see what happens with me. But something is happening here and I want to be a part of it.”

WARNER RETURNS: Legendary quarterback Kurt Warner returned to the Edward Jones Dome on Thursday night for the first time as a non-player. Warner is in town for work with NFL Network and his charity golf tournament set for tomorrow.

Before the game, Warner and former Rams running mate Marshall Faulk were on the field breaking down the game, the first time they’d shared the turf they made famous since 2003.

During the first quarter, Warner was introduced to the crowd to a raucous applause from the adoring home fans. Warner said last week that he always enjoys coming back.

“I always look forward to it,” Warner said. “The people of St. Louis are awesome and to be able to do what we do there, we love it. It’s one of those things, unfortunately, when you get crazy busy and you have seven kids, you almost have to have an excuse to come back whether it’s to go see my family in Iowa or to come back to St. Louis but we look forward to those excuses to come back to St. Louis to see friends and to continue to impart what we want to continue to do in that community and feel the support that we still have from so many people there. It’s always welcome when we have that opportunity or when we schedule these things every year.”

SITTING IT OUT: Believe it or not, on a short week, the Rams actually got a bit healthier this week before the matchup with Arizona but without a full week to practice some of the recovering players were not active against the Cardinals.

Defensive end Eugene Sims (concussion) did not play after he was ruled out on Wednesday afternoon. Tackle Rodger Saffold, of course, was also inactive as he continues to recover from a knee injury.

Elsewhere, the Rams had some difficult decisions to make as some players returned to practice but were pregame inactives. Defensive tackle Matt Conrath (knee) and safety Matt Daniels (hamstring) were back in practice this week but were not active Thursday night.

The rest of the inactive list included quarterback Austin Davis, receiver Steve Smith and running back Terrance Ganaway were also inactive.

Smith was inactive for the second week in a row as the Rams kept five wideouts available and an extra offensive lineman. Ganaway was active last week for the Seattle game but is down this week with rookie Isaiah Pead back on the active list.

For Arizona, defensive tackle Darnell Dockett was active and started after being limited in practice this week with a hamstring injury. Dockett did not play last week against Miami.