Pisa Tinoisamoa handled his release with class

SLPD = Saint Louis Post-Dispatch

About the Rams releasing him, Pisa said:
“I really like the direction they’re going. Because the team wasn’t winning, you knew this year was going to be different, and a lot of faces would be different. I didn’t really honestly think it would involve me. But the change is here, it’s come, and I think it’s a good change. If something isn’t working, you’ve got to figure things out.” (SLPD)

SLPD Note: “Tinoisamoa, 27, led the Rams in tackles in four of his six seasons but didn’t fit the mold of coach Steve Spagnuolo, who prefers bigger linebackers.”

About Pisa’s release, coach Spagnuolo said in a statement (neither coach nor GM was available to the press for comment):
“This was a difficult decision based on a lot of factors. I have a great deal of respect for Pisa and wish him all the best.” (SLPD)

SLPD Note: “Chief among those factors was size. Tinoisamoa was listed at 240 pounds but played at 220 last year. When the Rams announced that Will Witherspoon would move to the weak side and Chris Draft to the middle, the only spot remaining was on the strong side, which requires an even beefier guy who frequently mucks with tight ends. The addition of James Laurinaitis in the second round of the draft further complicated Tinoisamoa’s situation.”

About how he made too much money to be a backup LB, Pisa said:
“They thought I was too good to be a backup. I’m getting paid too much to be a backup. They had brought that up earlier in the week, so (being released) wasn’t a total surprise.” (SLPD)

SLPD Note: “Tinoisamoa’s release frees up about $2.25 million in cap space but leaves the linebacking corps thin.”

About how he rotated with the backup LBs in their recently concluded minicamp, Pisa said:
“I thought I did decent. It was a new position, but I didn’t think it was anything that was going to be unrealistic or unattainable. But when you see a rotation, you know there was something that just wasn’t solidified yet, and that made me uneasy. I thought that I had a good chance of making this team, so the timing kind of hit me out of the blue.” (SLPD)

SLPD Note: “A second-round pick out of Hawaii in 2003, Tinoisamoa became the first rookie to lead the team in tackles, with 121. He led the team in tackles the following two seasons and was named a team captain in 2004. Tinoisamoa signed a $24.7 million contract extension after five games of 2006 that locked him up through 2011. About that time, though, he suffered a series of injuries to a hand, elbow, shoulder, ankle and knee that forced him to miss 12 games in 2006 and 2007. He started every game last year, though, and again led the team in tackles, with 135.”

About his NFL career with the Rams, Pisa said:
“It was a great moment in my life, coming into a team and making the playoffs my first two seasons. The past couple years haven’t been the best, but I’ve always tried to get back to that level of success as a team. My attitude never changed, and I always strove to be the best.” (SLPD)

http://www.stltoday.com/stltoday/sports/stories.nsf/rams/story/C2DDDF592AA77CAB862575B10003B999?OpenDocument

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