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Rams players praise Fisher's 'cool, calm demeanor'


With the arrival of the 2012 NFL schedule Tuesday night, we asked which new head coach faced the toughest road in 2012.

A follow-up question: Is it fair to include Jeff Fisher in that group? The Rams coach is technically in his first season in St. Louis, but come on -- he logged 16 full campaigns with the Houston Oilers/Tennessee Titans. We watched the man's beard fade to white on that sideline.

Not exactly a newbie coach gingerly negotiating his first NFL offseason. Rams players can tell. They encountered a poised, collected Fisher on the practice field Tuesday, his first such outing in almost 15 months.

"He's got such a cool, calm demeanor about him," linebacker James Laurinaitis told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. "It doesn't look like he gets riled up. I haven't seen the riled-up coach Fisher yet."

One immediate to-do for Fisher: Help Sam Bradford absorb his third offensive scheme in as many years. The team's starting quarterback spoke of a changed landscape under his new coach.

"He's someone who has been around this league a long time and has won a lot of football games," Bradford said. "I believe in everything he tells us, I believe in everything he says in those team meetings. ... I think everyone in that locker room is behind coach Fisher."

The transformation won't be immediate -- the Rams were 2-14 for a reason last season -- but Fisher isn't doing anything for the first time here.


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