Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Slater Signals Career's Up . . .Opening Door for Return of `Wolfman' on Special Teams

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Slater Signals Career's Up . . .Opening Door for Return of `Wolfman' on Special Teams

Article excerpt

The Rams lost a legend Wednesday in Jackie Slater, but they're gaining a cult hero. The Wolfman's back. The Rams have re-signed special-teams maniac Ron Wolfley.

Rams fans again will thrill to the sight of Wolfley waddling down field as fast as his 33-year-old legs will carry him, then splattering his body into the wedge on kickoff coverage.

"I like what Wolfley brings to this team in leadership and toughness," coach Rich Brooks said.

And his short-yardage expertise.

"That's right," Brooks joked. "Any time you need 2 yards, dial Wolfman."

Nominally listed as a running back, Wolfley carried twice for 7 yards on Sept. 24 against Chicago, his first carries in the National Football League since 1992. But when jumbo backs Jerome Bettis and Leonard Russell were injured Oct. 29 against Philadelphia, Wolfley realized his roster spot was in jeopardy.

"I knew they had to bring a back in here unless they planned on me carrying the mail, which is not going to happen," Wolfley said. "They're not all of a sudden going to say, `He's 33 years old, let's give him the ball!' "

So Wolfley was waived Nov. 1 to make room for Greg Robinson on the roster. Returning to his home near Buffalo, Wolfley didn't do much constructive during his layoff except, uh, clean up after his two dogs in the back yard.

"I used to think the nastiest pile in creation was the pile on the goal line," Wolfley said. "But it's not. There's a lot nastier piles than that, and anybody who works at the zoo will tell you that."

The dogs, Harley and Cody, are 100-pound yellow labs bred by Dallas tight end Jay Novacek.

"I wanted to name the other one Davidson - you know, Harley and Davidson - but my wife wouldn't let me," Wolfley said.

At least he got support in his time of distress from his wife, Kathy, and four children. They had stayed in upstate New York during the season.

"I was upset that I was not playing football," Wolfley said. "My wife was more upset that there weren't checks coming in. …

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