The Rams lost their first preseason game to the Browns 27-19 and if it is one thing that was blatantly obvious it was that Daryl Richardson has separated himself from the pack in the running back competition. Zac Stacy and Benny Cunningham also had respectable games. The one running back that did not have a good game however was the one everyone was hoping would, Isaiah Pead. This leads us to the question, is Isaiah Pead in trouble and is he fighting for a spot on the roster?
Isaiah Pead didn’t have the best start to Thursday’s game to say the least. On the Rams’ first offensive drive, Bradford had lead the Rams just outside the red zone only to have Pead fumble and the Browns recover. Pead did end up having three carries for 18 yards, but still fumbling on the first drive is not really the best way to make a good impression in the running back competition. Pead not only made a negative impact running the football, but he made absolutely no impact catching out of the backfield where it is said he could make his biggest impact.
What makes the situation even worse for Pead is that Zac Stacy had a good night with seven carries for 23 yards along with two receptions that went for 13 yards.Benny Cunningham also surprised many by coming out of nowhere having five carries for 20 yards. Cunningham and Stacy are two rookies that showed some good things to the coaches in their debut while Pead is in his second year and struggling. If Pead isn’t careful these two rookies could very well pass him on the depth chart and cost him his spot on the roster.
The Rams took Pead in the second round in last year’s draft in hopes that he would be the become the replacement for Steven Jackson, which right now isn’t working out so well. The Rams had good reason to draft Pead as he rushed for over 1,000 yards in last two seasons at Cincinnati and had respectable numbers catching out of the backfield. Pead had playmaking ability, but due to Cincinnati ’s academic calendar, Pead was forced to miss part of mini-camp and never really caught up, Richardson snuck ahead and never looked back. In the few opportunities that Pead did get last season had one fumble and that is on limited touches. Not to mention this season Pead is already suspended week one of the regular season and had another fumble. Pead has player study issues, ball security issues, and off the field issues. If Pead doesn’t clean up his act quick he might as well put his name next to Mardy Gilyard’s as Cincinnati draft busts to come through St. Louis. Pead is honestly more trouble than he is worth right now and he is lucky he was a second round pick last year, because if he wasn’t, the Rams would probably cut him, heck Fisher might still cut him.
Isaiah Pead’s reputation in St. Louis is not very good right now. He has lost some trust. but he still has plenty of time to redeem himself. He has a lot of catching up to do and a lot of work to do to keep his job, because if he’s not careful, getting the starting role will be the least of his worries as he may just be fighting to keep his job. Pead will still get his opportunities, but right now it doesn’t look good for him. Pead may just officially be the first “bust” of the Snead and Fisher era.