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Pace gets a workout in loss to Kansas City
ST. LOUIS (AP) -- After taking most of the summer off, it was time for Orlando Pace to go to work.
Unlike Kurt Warner and Marshall Faulk, who didn't start for the St. Louis Rams in the final tuneup for the regular season, a 22-6 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs in the annual Governor's Cup game, Pace, a contract holdout all summer, played most of the first half.
The Chiefs (3-2) also limited their star players' exposure or held them out altogether in a game so lacking in drama the biggest cheer of the night came when Kerry Robinson hit a game-winning ninth-inning homer as the Cardinals beat the Cubs at Busch Stadium.
"The biggest emphasis was to get out there, get a few plays and get out healthy," Rams offensive tackle Kyle Turley said. "That's what I think we accomplished.
"It wasn't too ugly."
Kansas City's Trent Green played one series, completing his only pass for a 6-yard touchdown to Omar Easy in the first quarter. Priest Holmes didn't play, a precaution after his hip injury last year, and tight end Tony Gonzalez also sat after a minor knee injury on Tuesday.
"Obviously, it's nice to come to St. Louis without getting anyone hurt in a preseason game," Chiefs coach Dick Vermeil said. "I don't know if that's an indication we're a good or bad football team."
But Pace played most of the first half for the Rams (1-3) to shake off the rust with a little more than a week to go before the start of the regular season. The Rams' franchise player, who signed a one-year tender for $5.73 million on Tuesday, did fine but wasn't his usual dominating self.
"With two days of practice it was tough to get out there," Pace said. "But it was good to get some live bullets so you can get a feel of the game tempo and you won't be in shock next week if you're playing in the Giants game."
Pace wouldn't guarantee he'd be ready for the Sept. 7 opener at New York. He appeared several pounds over his playing weight.
"I don't know, we'll see," Pace said. "I'll just do a lot of cardio this week and work on my technique, and hopefully I'll be tuned up a lot better than I was tonight."
On one play, Pace was spun around by a pass rusher. On another, Vonnie Holliday got around Pace and hurried quarterback Marc Bulger.
"I wanted to go out there and get some tempo, get my wind up," Pace said. "It was a struggle towards the end."
Green's touchdown pass to Easy capped a 73-yard drive on the Chiefs' first possession.
Jeff Wilkins missed a 34-yard field goal attempt wide left for the Rams in the first quarter, but rebounded by hitting from 34 and 39 yards in the second quarter, making it 7-6. The first field goal was set up by Damione Lewis' recovery of a fumbled reverse by Chiefs wide receiver Marc Boerigter, ending with a loss of 26 yards to the Kansas City 17.
The Rams' first two series ended in failure, an interception in the end zone by Jerome Woods on an off-target throw by Bulger and Wilkins' missed field goal.
Most of the game was contested by reserves. The Chiefs went to third-string quarterback Jonathan Quinn at the end of the first half, and Rams' third-string quarterback Kirk Farmer entered the game in the second half.
Quinn had a 50-yard touchdown pass to Marvin Minnis and his 36-yard pass to Curtis Jackson set up a 29-yard field goal by Morten Andersen that put the Chiefs ahead 17-6. Quinn was 15-for-21 for 231 yards.
"I felt very comfortable," Quinn said. "They were doing just some base defenses, nothing too complicated, and our plays are simple. I was just out having a good time."
Bulger re-entered the game with 2:13 remaining in the third quarter in place of the struggling Farmer. But on his first series back he was intercepted by Corey Harris, whose 24-yard return to the Rams' 11 set up a 24-yard field goal by Andersen that made it 20-6 with 14:55 remaining.
Jared Tomich sacked Bulger in the end zone, stripping the ball for a safety with eight minutes to go. Bulger was 15-for-28 for 158 yards with two interceptions.
Farmer entered the game a shaky No. 3, even though the Rams cut their only other quarterback earlier this week.
"He's a little nervous," Rams coach Mike Martz said. "You've got to remember how old he is, and he didn't play last year. This has no bearing on if he'll be able to play in the National Football League."
Farmer said: "I'm just praying I'm here on Monday."
The Chiefs open at home against San Diego.