Still quiet, Warner's health is improved

Saturday, January 19, 2002

ST. LOUIS -- St. Louis Rams quarterback Kurt Warner gave his voice more of a test in practice Friday, and the team expects no problems in Sunday's playoff game.

Warner suffered bruised vocal cords in the regular-season finale Jan. 6 when he took a blow to the throat. He hasn't talked to reporters since then, but has been speaking softly in the huddle and on the line of scrimmage.

His voice was inaudible from the sidelines on Thursday, and could barely be heard on Friday. He also began talking in meetings on Thursday.

"They evaluated him again last night and he's not quite completely normal," coach Mike Martz said. "But he's as close as you can get without being normal."

Offensive tackle Ryan Tucker has not practiced all week due to a sprained ankle suffered in the season finale, and backup Rod Jones likely will start in his place. Jones started one game, against the Jets in Week 6, and has played as a reserve in five others.

For the first time all season, Rams players will spend the night before the game in a hotel. Martz said it'll help eliminate distractions.

Parcells turns down Bucs

Two-time Super Bowl champion Bill Parcells said he will not return to the sideline with the Bucs, who haven't interviewed any other candidates.

Parcells said he wasn't able to make the commitment necessary to do the job.

"I didn't want to go down there for one or two years, and then not be able to follow through with what I know to be the type of effort that has to be in place in order to succeed in this competitive industry," Parcells said on Sporting News Radio, which carries his weekly show.

"I'm finished coaching. There aren't going to be any more rumors about me coaching. "

-- From wire services

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