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For Rams, punter Hekker doing less but loving it more

Gary Klein, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Football

Teammates, especially those on offense, take it as a good sign that they have reduced Hekker's workload.

"I'm pretty sure we wore his leg out a lot since he's been here," running back Todd Gurley said, adding "The previous years he was our offense. We weren't able to get yards, he was able to put the defense in a good position. When we need him, he's always there for us."

Hekker punted only twice in each of the last two games, a 33-0 victory over the Arizona Cardinals and a 51-17 victory over the New York Giants.

He said he still was getting plenty of kicks during practices and before games.

"I don't feel rusty -- I feel fresh," he said, "and just eager to make those punts count."

Hekker has made the Pro Bowl in each of the last two seasons.

With fewer opportunities this season, that streak would seem to be in peril.

As the Rams prepare for Sunday's game against the Houston Texans, Hekker said he was not concerned.

"It's the kind of situation where that takes care of itself," he said, adding, "There are plenty of punters in the NFL that are very, very skilled and there are guys that are playing at a very high level right now that deserve all the recognition in the world.

"I will never be upset when other guys get recognition they deserve."

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