LA Rams DL talent still overflowing for 2021
By Bret Stuter
The third time is a charm
The LA Rams are bringing back DL Marquise Copeland for a third season. The 6-foot-2 287-pound defensive lineman signed on with the team after the 2019 NFL Draft and continues to push for a role on the Rams active roster. He did get called up from the practice squad to face the Dallas Cowboys in the season opener and leveraged three defensive snaps into one tackle. Of the Rams reserves, Copeland is certainly the one with NFL game experience.
Why he could see a larger role in 2021:
Marquise Copeland has remained with the Rams for some time, so there is definitely something about him that the team likes. And with each year of ‘sticking around’, he has been coached up, trained, worked out, and observed the role he is to fill and the players who are filling that role. It’s now or never. If the Rams suspected it might be never, he would not still be with the team.
He is a stout and powerful player. While he won’t be confused with the lithe sinewy long-armed Eric Banks, Copeland is ideally built for the bumper car action of an interior defensive lineman’s role. This could be the opportunity for him, as he certainly knows the Rams and they know him. Right now, the Rams see two holes to fill in the roster, and if Copeland can show improvement, one of those roles could be his for the taking.
Why he won’t see a larger role in 2021:
Well, the same reasons that he has stuck around with the team open the obvious critiquing, If he has stuck around, why hasn’t he been given a shot at playing time? While he did get called up for the Cowboys game, that was the end of that, and he was not given another chance for the remainder of the year. If he were an inch or two taller, he would be an odds-on favorite for one of the two backup roles. But he is built for the interior, and the Rams seem to have an abundance of big bodies to throw at the offensive center for the time being.