Examining emergency quarterbacks and Rams' Johnny Hekker

EARTH CITY, Mo. -- Most NFL teams only carry two quarterbacks on their active game day rosters, which means that every once in awhile injuries hit hard enough to cause them to prepare to break the emergency glass to have someone else under center.

More often than not, teams don't have to actually play the emergency quarterback but it has happened in the past.

On Wednesday, ESPN's NFL Nation took a look at the emergency quarterback for each team and NFL Nation columnist Kevin Seifert offered a fun retrospective on Tony Dungy, the most memorable emergency quarterback of all time.

For the St. Louis Rams, it's no secret who they would turn to if things got bad enough. Punter Johnny Hekker isn't just an emergency quarterback, he's essentially been used as one in a variety of fake punts and kicks. That's why Hekker has completed 6 of 9 passes for 99 yards and a touchdown since he entered the league.

Hekker hasn't just completed dumpoffs or quick screens, either. He's showed the ability to run around and get the ball down the field. Earlier this year, he rolled to his right and threw off his back foot to safety Cody Davis for a first down.

So while the Rams would prefer to not have to go to an emergency quarterback, they know they have an option that can at least make some plays if he's ever asked.


A roundup of Wednesday's Rams stories appearing on ESPN.com. ... We started the day with our news story on receiver Stedman Bailey being shot in Florida. ... The Rams plan to try some "different things" to get running back Todd Gurley going this week. ... The Ram-blings looked at whether the Rams would want an offseason do-over if they could. ... Rams players took to social media to send thoughts and prayers to Bailey. ... The Rams will play in London again next year but it has little to do with relocation. ... Five Rams are semifinalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame class of 2016. ... The Rams expressed optimism and focus despite worrying about Bailey's status on Wednesday. ... If he's healthy, Rams quarterback Case Keenum will start this week. ... Keenum practiced on a limited basis Wednesday.


Ravens coach John Harbaugh denied that he insinuated that the Rams are a dirty team.

Gurley is one of the leading vote-getters in early Pro Bowl voting.

Rams DT Aaron Donald has been nominated for the Art Rooney award.

At 101sports.com, Bernie Miklasz pondered the Rams' next game in London.

Miklasz also wondered whether left tackle Greg Robinson will ever reach his potential.

At stltoday.com, Benjamin Hochman offered his thoughts on Bailey's situation.

Joe Buck discussed the Rams and Los Angeles on KTVI-St. Louis.