Rams QB Sam Bradford out for season with torn ACL

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ST. LOUIS (AP) - Sam Bradford is done for the season, and the chances on this being the year the St. Louis Rams post their first winning season in a decade changed dramatically.

They insist the season is far from over.

Coach Jeff Fisher told players to keep their chins up on Monday, referencing a book by an inspirational speaker as a rallying point for the final nine games.

“We’re going to see a lot of people step up,” defensive end Chris Long said. “And we’re going to see a lot of people step up that you might not expect.”

One of them needs to be Kellen Clemens, who’ll be making his 13th career start in eight seasons next Monday night against the Seahawks.

Clemens has been the backup the past two years and was with offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer with the Jets, too, so he knows the scheme.

Plus, he’s the only other quarterback on the roster.

“Somebody’s got to play,” Clemens said. “So I’ll go out there and do the best job I can and try to help this team win some games,” Clemens said.

Bradford will have season-ending surgery for a torn ligament in his left knee after getting hurt in the fourth quarter of Sunday’s 30-15 loss at Carolina that dropped the Rams to 3-4.

The Rams feared the worst on the return flight and on Monday announced results of an MRI.

Surgery will be done in the next 2-3 weeks once the swelling goes down and Fisher was confident Bradford would make a complete recovery in time for next season.

“Very disappointing,” middle linebacker James Laurinaitis said. “I thought he was putting up a strong season. It’s a long grind now for him.”

The Rams will be auditioning quarterbacks this week but Fisher said they won’t make a trade, which means Clemens is likely set for his first extended opportunity since he made eight starts in 2007 for the Jets.

At his regular day-after news conference, Fisher did his best to dismiss all rumors and said he wasn’t “at liberty” to discuss any names. One potential name is Austin Davis, released at the end of training camp.

“There’s a lot of speculation out there, everybody’s talking and everybody knows more than we do right now OK?” Fisher said. “Trust me, we have a process in place and we’re going through that process.”

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