Ed "Pi Double i" Henderson
The Los Angeles Rams revealed their new 53-man roster yesterday. I rather have to say that there was some surprise from players that were cut from the roster. However, at the end of the day, it’s a business decision players didn’t no parts.
Prior to the waiver process, the front office made a few moves by acquiring Washington Redskin’s tight-end Derek Carrier from a trade. Shortly after the trade, it was announced that the Rams terminated the contract of veteran tight-end Corey Harkey.
Certainly several players made strong cases to make the team, but unfortunately, few were caught up in the number’s game. Still collecting thoughts of a few players that were released, particularly of rookie offensive lineman Jake Eldrenkamp. The team decided to keep only eight linemen on the active roster, something outside of the normal.
Second-year linebacker Josh Forrest, another player that played well in the pre-season was released too. Forrest was returning from a season-ending knee injury that he sustained in 2016. It appeared he was injured against the Packers and waived due to injury.
Running back Aaron Green who was expected to be the third back on the depth chart, simply was overshadowed by undrafted rookie running back Justin Davis. Green was recovering from hand surgery and never was able to get the reps on the field.
No bigger surprise than defensive back Mike Jordan, who was released simply because two other defensive backs had better camps in Wade Phillips defensive scheme. Local kid Dominique Hatfield and Kevin Peterson both played well and were rewarded for their efforts. Rams General Manager Les Snead mentioned in yesterday press conference that the team has extended an invitation to Jordan welcoming him back to the teams practice squad.
Wide receivers Brandon Shippen and Paul McRoberts both looked great in camp and played well in pre-season, but just had too far much of depth at that position. Shippen had the strongest case in leading the team in receptions through the pre-season. McRoberts probably had the best camp since joining the Rams two seasons ago. We all remember the tragedy that struck his family last season on Hard Knocks, learning the death of his step-brother.
Last, Nelson Spruce seemed to never stay away from injuries to make a case for himself. It was ironic that this occurred two consecutive seasons, as Head Coach Sean McVay was not sacrificing a roster spot to hide Spruce injury again as Jeff Fisher last season. However, he cleared waivers and has been placed on the injured reserve.
The waiver process has initiated as Rams have claimed OL Austin Neary (Eagles), OL JJ Dielman (Bengals) and DL Quinton Jefferson (Seahawks).
Neary was on the practice squad of the Philadelphia Eagles last season and played collegiately at Eastern Washington University reuniting him with Cooper Kupp. Jefferson playing with the Seahawks had a season-ending knee injury in the third game of the season. Dielman the former All-PAC 12 lineman was drafted by Cincinnati Bengals in the fifth round. He suffered a foot injury as was cleared to play late in the preseason.
The three claimed players mean that the Rams will have to adjust the 53-man roster. Some disappointment may come today as we all wait to see who will be released. Those three players were TE Johnny Mundt, LB Nic Grigsby, and DT Louis Trina-Pasat
Full practice squad has been announced:
DT Omarius Bryant | Western Kentucky
OL Michael Dunn | Maryland
OL Jake Eldrenkamp | Washington
DB Isaiah Johnson | Georgia Tech
LB Cassanova McKinzy | Auburn
WR Paul McRoberts | Southeast Missouri State
FB Sam Rogers | Virginia Tech
OLB Carlos Thompson | Ole Miss
TE Travis Wilson | Utah
Reflecting back to the 53-man roster prediction, the players expected to make the practice squad have been placed. Good luck to them all, but I don't see all players are safe with trades on the arise now around the league.