Rams deal DE Hargrove to Bills for fifth-round pick

Updated: October 16, 2006, 6:08 PM ET
Associated Press

ST. LOUIS -- Defensive end Anthony Hargrove, who lost his starting job with the St. Louis Rams after skipping two days of practice and meetings, was traded Monday to the Buffalo Bills for a fifth-round draft choice in 2007.

Defensive End
St. Louis Rams

Profile
2006 SEASON STATISTICS
Tot Ast Solo FF Sack Int
3 2 1 0 1 0

Hargrove was inactive Sunday, when the Rams lost 30-28 to Seattle, and has played just three games this season. The third-round selection in 2004 out of Georgia Tech played 35 games for St. Louis, starting 19. He has just two tackles, one assist and a half-sack this season.

Last month, he failed to show at Rams Park on consecutive days. Hargrove was fined an undisclosed amount and did not make the trip to Arizona for the Rams' 16-14 victory on Sept. 24. Rookie Victor Adeyanju, a fourth-round pick, took over Hargrove's spot. Hargrove apologized for his absence, but did not say why he took time off without notifying the team.

"I honestly think the world of Tony," Rams coach Scott Linehan said. "He's a real likeable guy. He's got a lot of talent. He's been fighting with the level of consistency we demand."

The Rams (4-2) have a bye week, and will use the time to look at adding another defensive lineman to fill Hargrove's roster spot. The trade leaves St. Louis with just three defensive ends: Leonard Little, Adeyanju and Brandon Green.

Hargrove could get immediate playing time in Buffalo. The Bills' pass rush has been ineffective, and the team is thin on the defensive line. Buffalo was down to three defensive tackles after placing rookie first-round pick John McCargo on injured reserve Saturday after he broke his left foot against Chicago on Oct. 8.

The Bills (2-4) are relatively set at defensive end with Aaron Schobel, their top pass-rusher, and Ryan Denney and Chris Kelsay splitting time on the left side.

Hargrove will be reunited with defensive line coach Bill Kollar, who worked for the Rams under Mike Martz.

Coach Dick Jauron didn't seem concerned about Hargrove's incident in St. Louis.

"We were concerned enough to investigate all of our sources, and we were also satisfied with everything we found out," Jauron said. "We feel pretty good about it.

"He's a young player so he's got a lot of future, we hope, in front of him, and a good one. And we think he'll fit into a rotation for us."

Buffalo has just six sacks in the past four games. The Bills also have struggled against the run, allowing 287 yards rushing in the past two games.

Buffalo starts two rookie safeties, and rookie fifth-round defensive tackle Kyle Williams has had significant playing time.

To make room on their roster for Hargrove, the Bills placed linebacker Josh Stamer on injured reserve. Stamer hurt his right knee in Sunday's 20-17 loss at Detroit.


Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press