LA Rams News: Team adds DB J.R. Reed to practice squad

(Photo by Don Juan Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by Don Juan Moore/Getty Images) /

LA Rams News: Team opts to sign former Jaguars defensive back J.R. Reed to practice squad

The LA Rams saved a spot on the practice squad for several events that needed more time to play out.  The Rams had questions about OLB Terrell Lewis. The Rams had wanted to bring back LB Clay Johnston to the practice squad. And the team was interested in running back Raymond Calais to add some juice to the team’s return game.

At the end of the day, the LA Rams had questions about OLB Terrell Lewis’ knee, a new player in need of a roster spot, and an open practice squad spot, originally intended for linebacker Clay Johnston. If you hadn’t heard, Johnston elected to sign with the Carolina Panthers and reunite with his father and former NFL coaches.

Filling roster holes

Of course, the LA Rams have other roster transactions in the news recently. We just discussed how the Rams have placed Terrell Lewis on the Reserve/NFI list and signed RB Raymond Calais to the roster.  The only item left to discuss is filling the Rams’ final roster spot. That was filled on September 9, 2020, with a recently waived defensive back from the Jacksonville Jaguars in J.R. Reed.

Who is J.R. Reed? Simply stated, he was one of the most dependable safeties in one of the staunchest defenses in NCAA football. He was a tackler, a thumper, and a player who knew instinctively where to be on the field of play to make the play. He comes ready to play on each and every down.

Safe safety selection

He is a big physical throwback safety, standing 6-foot-1, and weighing 202-pounds. When the Rams selected safety Jordan Fuller, J.R. Reed was still on the board, which we pointed out. The fact is that some had Reed with a mid-draft grade. So what happened? Well, his father believes it was an erroneous medical flag.

The curious point here is that numerically, the Rams are pretty strong on their roster with safeties. And yet, the team made it a point to fill their last roster spot with a safety. While the Staley-styled defense, the version run by LA Rams defensive coordinator Brandon Staley, is still unknown, there is plenty of evidence to suggest that the team will feature safeties in the box frequently, eliminating the need for as many inside linebackers on the roster.

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The roster certainly supports a heavier than usual reliance upon defensive linemen and defensive backs on this defense. We’ll know for sure in just a matter of days.