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Practice Blowoff Costs Rams DE

St. Louis Rams defensive end Kevin Carter was removed from the starting lineup and fined an undisclosed amount Thursday, a day after he skipped practice without an excuse.

Carter, who led the NFL with 17 sacks last year and made his first Pro Bowl appearance, was back at practice Thursday.

"It was an action I had to take," coach Mike Martz said. "There's a line there that you can't cross. If you do, there are ramifications.

"He understands why I did it. He's disappointed. He wants to start. He feels he let the team down."

Carter refused to comment when asked why he missed practice.

"I'm just going to let it die, and then you all don't have anything to write about," he said.

Carter's wife had the couple's first child Tuesday.

"If he had called, we might have been able to work something out," Martz said. "We had a problem, it's been resolved, and now we move on."

Martz said Carter, in the final year of his contract, will play Sunday at Atlanta, but that Sean Moran will start.

"It's not going to be a thing where we play Moran for a series or two and get him out," Martz said. "We'll kind of spot (Carter) in there."

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