First step is to reach end zone

Los Angeles Times - - SPORTS - By Gary Klein gary.klein@la­ Twit­ter: @la­timesklein

The Rams meet with a crew of NFL of­fi­cials to re­view the new touch­down cel­e­bra­tion pol­icy.

Former NFL stars Ter­rell Owens and Randy Moss left quite an im­pres­sion on young Rams re­ceivers — es­pe­cially with their touch­down cel­e­bra­tions.

Sec­ond-year pro Pharoh Cooper re­called Owens’ in­fa­mous use of a Sharpie. Rookie tight end Ger­ald Everett quickly cited Owens’ stomp on the Dal­las Cow­boys’ mid­field star.

On Thurs­day night, the Rams met with a crew of NFL of­fi­cials and viewed a video that de­tails what play­ers can and can­not do this sea­son when the league re­laxes its rules on touch­down cel­e­bra­tions.

The ball can now be used as a prop af­ter scor­ing plays and changes of pos­ses­sion, and group cel­e­bra­tions and cel­e­bra­tions that in­clude a player or play­ers on the turf are al­lowed.

Taunt­ing re­mains pro­hib­ited, as are any ac­tions di­rected at an op­po­nent that are deemed of­fen­sive, vi­o­lent in na­ture or in­clude the use of a prop other than a foot­ball.

Cel­e­bra­tions are wel­comed by play­ers.

“It makes the game more fun,” said Cooper, who is look­ing to score his first touch­down. “Give the guys a chance to ex­press them­selves.

“It’s not just a busi­ness and a se­ri­ous game. We’ve been play­ing it since we were lit­tle, so you know it’s al­ways cool to have fun with it.”

Everett has not made spe­cific plans for his first touch­down.

“I’m not sure what’s go­ing to hap­pen,” he said. “Hope­fully, I don’t get flagged, but I don’t think I will.”

The Rams, of course, must score touch­downs to en­joy the mo­ment with cel­e­bra­tions.

Last sea­son, they scored only 24 touch­downs, fewest in the NFL.

New coach Sean McVay was hired to help in­crease of­fen­sive pro­duc­tion and wins. So he is for cel­e­bra­tions.

The Rams get their first chance Satur­day night when they play the Dal­las Cow­boys in a pre­sea­son opener at the Coli­seum.

“It’s about hav­ing fun and en­joy­ing the com­pe­ti­tion,” McVay said of cel­e­bra­tions. “And ul­ti­mately it is a great en­ter­tain­ment sport.

“I think that of­fers a unique op­por­tu­nity for the play­ers to be able to en­joy when they’re hav­ing some suc­cess and the fans can get a kick out of some of the things they’ll do.”

Ral­ly­ing point

The three fights that broke out dur­ing a joint prac­tice with the Charg­ers on Wed­nes­day brought the Rams’ se­condary to­gether, cor­ner­back E.J. Gaines said.

Cor­ner­backs Tru­maine John­son, Nick­ell RobeyCole­man and Gaines all played prom­i­nent roles in the in­ci­dents.

“This is one of the tight­est groups I’ve been around and ev­ery­body showed that by hav­ing each other’s back,” he said.

Gaines was in­volved in two of the skir­mishes. He was re­moved from the work­out by McVay.

“He was just telling me keep my head up and just take it in and cool down,” Gaines said. “He told me I had to kind of take one for the team.”

McVay, the NFL’s youngest coach, said he was not con­cerned about his team’s dis­ci­pline.

“If those things carry over to the game, then that’s where it be­comes a con­cern,” he said, adding, “We want to make sure we do our talk­ing be­tween the whis­tles, and that’s some­thing we’ll be mind­ful of mov­ing for­ward.”


The Rams signed kicker Travis Coons, who made 28 of 32 field goals for the Cleve­land Browns in 2015. Coons played at Alta Loma High and the Univer­sity of Wash­ing­ton. … Un­drafted re­ceiver Shakeir Ryan made an­other im­pres­sive catch. … Gaines made one of the plays of the day when he broke up a side­line pass from Jared Goff to re­ceiver Cooper Kupp.

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