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Sunday, October 21, 2012
Rams' inactives: Third-string LT vs. Pack

By Mike Sando

ST. LOUIS -- The St. Louis Rams are healthier this season than last, but not at left tackle.

Joe Barksdale will make his first career NFL start Sunday and will match up against Green Bay Packers outside linebacker Clay Matthews, who has eight sacks this season.

Barksdale replaces the injured Wayne Hunter, who was replacing the injured Rodger Saffold. Hunter, acquired from the New York Jets before the season, missed practice Friday and was named inactive Sunday. A back injury was the culprit.

The Rams will presumably help Barksdale with tight ends, running backs and their game plan. They are also playing with their third-string left guard and second-string center.

Barksdale, Shelley Smith, Robert Turner, Harvey Dahl and Barry Richardson will start. Tim Barnes and Quinn Ojinnaka are the backups. They are the only other healthy linemen on the roster. Teams typically keep seven linemen active for games.

Smith is replacing Ojinnaka, who has struggled. Smith could provide an upgrade in run blocking.

The Packers, meanwhile, will be without receiver Greg Jennings and defensive tackle B.J. Raji. Both were named inactive.

The Rams' inactive list: Austin Davis, Danny Amendola, Terrance Ganaway, Mario Haggan, Matt Conrath, Hunter and Saffold. The Packers' list: Johnny White, Sam Shields, Nick Perry, Greg Van Roten, Jennings and Raji. The Packers have one open roster spot, meaning they could list one fewer player on the inactive list.

Teams can have 46 players active for games under NFL rules.