St. Louis Marshall Faulk's neck injury doesn't appear to be as serious as first thought, but the status of the St. Louis Rams running back is uncertain for Sunday's game with the Dallas Cowboys.
Coach Mike Martz said Faulk had no numbness in his neck after injuring it when he was tackled in the second quarter of Monday night's 26-14 loss at Tampa Bay that dropped the Rams to 0-3.
Faulk, who appeared to have sprained ligaments in his neck, was scheduled for an MRI on Tuesday, but results will not be made available until Wednesday, a team spokesman said.
"I'm not sure what Marshall's situation is going to be," Martz said Tuesday. "It doesn't appear to be nearly as serious as we had thought."
Faulk felt "quite a bit better" Tuesday.
"He's just got general neck soreness and he is much improved, so we're encouraged by that, as you can imagine," Martz said. "It didn't appear to be nearly as dramatic or serious as what we initially thought."
Faulk, who has scored four of the Rams' six touchdowns this season, was upended by Bucs linebacker Derrick Brooks with 11:20 to go in the second quarter. He returned to the bench for the second half, but did not re-enter the game, although he tried in the fourth quarter.
"They really had to demand that he not go back in," Martz said.
Rookie Lamar Gordon, the Rams' third-round draft pick, would start ahead of Trung Canidate against the Cowboys if Faulk can't play. Canidate has been Faulk's backup since being taken in the first round of the 2000 draft, but Martz was unhappy with his play against the Bucs.
Gordon scored on a 21-yard run in the fourth quarter and had 44 yards on four carries, along with two catches for 15 yards. Canidate had 15 yards on six carries and one catch for five yards.
"When you look at him on tape, he's very impressive," Martz said. "His size and his speed and his run reads and his ability to jump-cut in the hole all those things that you hoped he would be they all showed up last night."
Martz said Monday night he was "very disappointed" with Canidate's play. On Tuesday, he backed off a bit.
"We've got to get Trung back up to where he was a year ago," Martz said. "I'm a little frustrated with him right now, obviously."
Two Rams defenders will miss about three weeks. Outside linebacker Tommy Polley has a torn groin and cornerback Dexter McCleon has a torn hamstring.
Martz said Don Davis, a Kansas University product who started at middle linebacker ahead of struggling Jamie Duncan against the Bucs, will move to the outside. Duncan, who has been playing with two dislocated fingers on his right hand, will start again in the middle.