A slew of Rams players formed a line as they left the team bus and made their way toward the Jack Hammett Sports Complex for the first of two joint scrimmages with the Chargers on Thursday.
Cornerback Aqib Talib stood out in a gold sleeveless shirt and a few steps behind him was a 6-foot-7 Andrew Whitworth towering over his teammates. Then came star running back Todd Gurley clutching on his cleats.
All three are Pro Bowl players for the Rams. The Chargers also have Pro Bowlers at those positions, but their left tackle and running back didn’t participate Thursday.
Chargers offensive tackle Russell Okung was present, but he’s recovering from a pulmonary embolism. But Melvin Gordon, the Chargers’ star tailback, hasn’t reported for training camp after seven practices, and likely won’t be arriving any time soon.
For Thursday’s scrimmage, the Chargers’ running back counter for Gurley was the duo of Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson.
Ekeler, the third-year undrafted player, has taken a lead role with Gordon absent. A year ago, Jackson was fighting for a roster spot as a 2018 seventh-round pick. He’s now helping Ekeler guide the running back group.