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Rams' Millen Fractures Ankle During Scrimmage

August 01, 1986|RICH ROBERTS | Times Staff Writer

Rookie quarterback Hugh Millen, the Rams' third-round draft choice from the University of Washington, fractured his right ankle Thursday night in a scrimmage against the San Diego Chargers in front of an announced crowd of 24,380 at Anaheim Stadium.

Millen was injured near the end of the two-hour event when he slipped without being hit while dropping back to pass. Moments earlier he had completed his only attempt to running back William Stone for 45 yards.

It was not known immediately how long Millen would be unable to play, but he'll probably be on injured reserve the rest of the season.

The crowd, attracted by free admission and an autograph and photo session before the scrimmage, was about twice what had been expected.

A 55-yard field was laid out in the outfield so as not to disturb the baseball infield.

The night was divided into a 7-on-7 passing drill featuring most of the teams' starters and an 11-on-11 contact scrimmage with rookies and reserves. The Rams' regular offensive linemen, with its four Pro Bowl players, were not in uniform.

The star of the night was Ram running back Eric Dickerson, who earlier in the day had expressed his pleasure at being incorporated into the passing offense. Participating only in the noncontact portion, he led all receivers with eight catches for 87 yards, including a long pass down the right sideline from Steve Bartkowski for a touchdown.

Bartkowski and Steve Dils each completed 9 of 13. The incumbent starter, Dieter Brock, was 5 of 14 and was booed after one long incomplete pass. Dils was 6 of 13 in the full-contact session and hit Ron Brown for a long touchdown in the 7-on-7.

Charger quarterback Dan Fouts completed 14 of 20 for 180 yards in the 7-on-7, while backup Mark Herrmann was 11 of 20 for 110.

Neither side was able to run the ball effectively.

Ram Coach John Robinson said: "We aren't back to where we finished last year, but we'll get there."

Robinson and Charger Coach Don Coryell were impressed by the attendance and the evening format.

"It was a lot better than a hot, sticky day, like a game situation. People get fire in their eyeballs," said Coryell.

Robinson said: "It's fun to see the people. They seemed very excited."

He anticipated it would become an annual affair, although he said: "We'll have to get it to fit into the Angels' schedule."

Defense is a term rarely associated with the Chargers, but it caught Coryell's eye.

"I was very pleased with the hitting of our defense," he said. "They were a little hungry. We've held them back in practice. I didn't see anybody that was timid."

Ram Notes

Starting inside linebacker Jim Collins and third-year nose tackle Shawn Miller ended their holdouts Thursday, leaving four players unsigned: First-round draft choice Mike Schad and veterans Mel Owens, Henry Ellard and Doug Reed. The Rams also signed free agent defensive back Lucious Smith, who played for them in 1980-82 before tours with Kansas City and San Diego. . . . Eric Dickerson, who has acted as his own agent since Jack Rodri and Ken Norton split their partnership, said he is negotiating to buy an athletic shoe store, as well as a house in Malibu. His book, "On The Run," will be out in September.

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