As if an 0-4 start wasn't bad enough, things got worse for the St. Louis Rams on Monday: Tight end Randy McMichael will be lost for the season with a broken right leg.
McMichael broke his tibia and tore a ligament in his leg in the Rams' 31-14 loss to Buffalo on Sept. 28. On Monday, the team put him on injured reserve, ending his 2008 season.
``He is a guy that is another playmaker on our football team,'' said Jim Haslett, who became interim coach a day after the Buffalo, when Scott Linehan was fired. ``It's a shame. He's a good kid. He worked hard. He's one of our better blockers and he's a guy who can run and go catch it, so obviously not having him is going to hurt us.''
Third-year player Joe Klopfenstein will start end, beginning with Sunday's game at Washington (4-1). Klopfenstein started as a rookie in 2006 before the Rams signed McMichael as a free agent.
block instead of catching passes.
After finishing with a career-low 39 catches in 2007, McMichael led the Rams in receiving in the first week against Philadelphia and had 11 catches for 139 yards in four games.
Buccaneers
Pat-down searches of fans entering Raymond James Stadium for will resume Sunday when the Bucs host Carolina.
The searches were suspended in 2005 pending a lawsuit from a high school civics teacher and season ticket holder. Gordon Johnston argued the pat-downs violated constitutional protection against unreasonable searches. A state circuit judge and U.S. District judge agreed with him.
But the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta ruled in June the district judge erred in allowing the injunction to remain, and Johnston's lawsuit was without merit because he consented to the searches.
Further, the court's opinion said, Johnston knew he would be searched, and the process ``supported a 'vital interest' ... to guard against mass casualties at NFL games from a potential terrorist attack.''
The Tampa Sports Authority filed a motion last month to dissolve the three-year-old injunction preventing the searches, which also are performed at other NFL stadium gates as part of the league's security procedures.
Fans attending Super Bowl games have been subject to pat-downs since 2002.

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