Rams RB available on 'if-need basis'

ST. LOUIS -- Marshall Faulk will be back on the practice
field this week for the St. Louis Rams, although he's not likely to
play Sunday at Pittsburgh.

Faulk has missed three games with a broken left hand and torn
cartilage in his right knee. When he was injured the team said the
hand would be more of a factor in his return, but coach Mike Martz
said Monday that Faulk still has to prove his leg is strong enough
to play.

"There's always that chance we could have him on an if-need
basis, but I'd like to avoid that if at all possible," Martz said.
"I suspect we'll have him ready to go next week and that's what
we're kind of aiming at.

"It's all just kind of hanging out there a little bit right

Martz said the Rams (4-2) will be cautious with Faulk, also
their strategy with injured safety Jason Sehorn. Sehorn has been
out since the opening week of training camp with a broken left foot
and team doctors are waiting for the break to fully heal before
allowing him to practice again.

"Could Marshall play this week? Probably," Martz said. "We
just want to make sure the knee is as strong as it needs to be
before we put him in a competitive situation."

Martz said Faulk's broken hand is no longer a factor. Faulk wore
a small brace on the sideline at Sunday's victory over the Packers.

"They were amazed at how fast it scarred over and healed,"
Martz said.

Martz said backup running back Lamar Gordon's high ankle sprain
sustained on Sunday will not affect Faulk's return, even if Gordon
can't play against the Steelers. Third-stringer Arlen Harris, an
undrafted free agent, had 85 yards on 18 carries and a 3-yard
touchdown run Sunday.

"Not for me, it's not," Martz said. "I'd be happy with Arlen.
He knows our system and protections.

"I think he's a terrific runner and I think he showed that the
other day."