Rams RB Jackson progresses, hopes to play more this week

ST. LOUIS -- The Rams are optimistic that Steven Jackson will have a larger workload this weekend when they host the Washington Redskins.

Jackson has been hobbled by a strained quadriceps muscle. He was hurt on the Rams' first play of the season against the Philadelphia Eagles.

The Rams' captain scored a touchdown on that 47-yard run, but he pulled up as he crossed the goal line. He had one more carry in that game -- for 9 yards -- and didn't play in the second game against the New York Giants.

Jackson saw limited time against the Ravens, who left St. Louis with a 37-7 victory that kept the Rams winless. He carried just four times for 23 yards.

Jackson has been limited in practice both Wednesday and Thursday. However, his presence on the practice field shows he is making progress.

"I've been able to practice all week, so that's having things go in the right direction," Jackson said. "I'll be out there on Sunday."

Having Jackson practice is a good thing, Rams coach Steve Spagnuolo said.

"You can tell he's still not full speed, but he is getting there," Spagnuolo said. "That's a positive sign. I don't think he's 100 percent, but he is getting there. Every day he is getting better and better."

Quarterback Sam Bradford is encouraged by what he has seen from Jackson in practice.

"He looked great. He looked fast," Bradford said. "He looked like himself and that's definitely going to be big for us."

Playing in last week's loss to Baltimore, Jackson showed his determination to do anything to help the Rams. He has played hurt before, including last season, and his will against the Ravens' fierce defense impressed his coach.

"I want to complement Steve for being a team player," Spagnuolo said. "Just having him in the huddle, I think, is big for our football team. That was kind of the reasoning and then I just kept my fingers crossed and said some prayers that it wouldn't go backward."

Meanwhile, running back Cadillac Williams (hamstring) had full participation in Thursday's practice after being limited Wednesday.

Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press

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