Rams quarterback Bulger will start Sunday against Packers

ST. LOUIS -- Marc Bulger is back as the St. Louis Rams' starting quarterback after a full week of practice with no concussion-related symptoms.

With backup Gus Frerotte also healthy after making a remarkable recovery from a partially torn labrum in his throwing shoulder, the Rams (3-10) are suddenly healthy at the position.

Last week, Bulger and Frerotte were out and Brock Berlin was elevated from the practice squad to start in his NFL debut at Cincinnati.

Coach Scott Linehan said Friday that Bulger, after missing two games with a concussion, would be the starter. Bulger was officially listed as probable for the Rams' game Sunday against the Green Bay Packers.

"He looked good all week," Linehan said. "I'm sure he's going to be just fine, but if there was any setback whatsoever for any reason we would have Plan B available.

"But we're not anticipating that."

Bulger declined to speak to reporters, excusing himself to lift weights. But teammates were impressed with his practice week.

"He looks healthy, he looks fresh," wide receiver Torry Holt said. "If we can keep him off his back, keep him fresh, that can make for a good day for us."

Frerotte's availability is perhaps more of a surprise. He injured the shoulder filling in for Bulger two weeks ago and didn't throw at all last week.

On Monday, the 36-year-old backup tested the shoulder and found he was able to throw 30 yards with very little pain. He threw some more the following day and handled some of the practice repetitions the last three days.

"I told Gus I think his arm got stronger during his injury," Linehan joked.

At first, Frerotte wondered if his season was over. His mood brightened when team doctors told him it was just a small tear and that there was no damage to the rotator cuff. Now, Frerotte is hoping to avoid offseason surgery.

"I've known people who've torn their labrum and they can't do anything, so I didn't try to do anything for a week," Frerotte said. "They didn't want me to throw Monday but I said I've got to see where I am, I've got to know what I can do.

"I didn't really have a lot of pain and it kept feeling better and better."

Frerotte said the only differences post-injury is the shoulder feels fatigued and tight.

"It feels pretty tired right now, but other than that it's fine," Frerotte said after practice.

The Rams will stick with the same starting offensive line for the third straight week, leaving Andy McCollum at center even though starter Brett Romberg appears to have finally recovered from a high ankle sprain that sidelined him five of the last six games. Romberg dressed but did not play last week and Linehan said he's sticking with McCollum largely because of continuity.

"That's a big thing with him," Romberg said. "Nothing I can do about it, I guess, just try to get ready. Whenever they call my number again I'll be ready to roll."

Kick returner Brandon Williams was ruled out with an ankle sprain and the Rams will use with either Marques Hagans or wide receiver Derek Stanley, who was elevated from the practice squad. Quarterback Todd Bouman, signed last week, was released.

Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press

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