LA Rams elevate DB Jake Gervase from PS to face Jets

Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports /

In LA Rams News: The team reports elevating DB Gervase from the practice squad to face the NY Jets

The LA Rams are once more trying to plug roster holes. This time, the culprit was the untimely loss of defensive back Nick Scott to the reserve/COVID-19 list just two games before the Rams are scheduled to face the New York Jets. That creates two holes in the Rams rotation. The first is the hole in the defensive rotation. The second is the hole in the special teams’ play.

The best option for special teams, if not for both, is to elevate a defensive back from the practice squad for this game. Right now, the Rams have one choice, defensive back Jake Gervase. Let’s investigate this move a bit further. Nick Scott is a 5-foot-11 201-pound defensive back drafted by the Rams in the seventh round of the 2019 NFL Draft with the 243rd pick.

Scott was primarily a special teams player in 2019. While he did see minimal action on defense, he played 80 percent of the special team snaps last year. In 2020, he continues to be one of the primary special teams’ players, but he has assumed a greater role in the defense since the team lost rookie Terrell Burgess for the season.

Gervase to the rescue

Jake Gervase is a 6-foot-1 212-pound defensive back who signed on with the Rams as an undrafted free agent in 2019. He was activated for two games in 2019 but spent the majority of last year on the practice squad. In 2020, the Rams had originally waived Gervase as the team pared the roster for the 2020 NFL season, but re-added him to the practice squad to reinforce the team’s secondary.

That proved to be a very wise move, as the team’s defensive secondary has been hit hard with a season-ending injury to Burgess who is joined by a minor injury to defensive back Taylor Rapp. Gervase is a big-bodied defensive back whose size and strength projects him into both a special teams role as well as a dime defensive back to handle the interior of the defense to face the Jets.

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With the Rams using both a nickel and dime sub-package on defense, that amplifies how shallow the team’s roster is to fill  the middle of the defense.  The Rams have also lost interior linebacker Travin Howard for the season, and interior linebacker Micah Kiser temporarily to a knee injury. That could prove to be a factor against the New York Jets, as they like to establish the running game early.