LA Rams edge is looking a bit ragged for roster cuts

Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /

The LA Rams starting outside linebackers currently sit on the shoulders of veteran Leonard Floyd and second-year player Justin Hollins. Beyond that, it gets a bit dicey. It’s not for a lack of bodies, but rather how dependable the roster becomes after the two definitive starters. You see, the Rams currently boast seven edge rushers, and will likely open the season with five, a similar number as the team opened in 2020.

The challenge is who to slide in for the remaining three roster spots? Well, let’s go down the path of who will likely earn a spot. We know that neither Ogbonnia Okoronkwo “Obo” nor Terrell Lewis saw much action in the preseason, typically a perk awarded to a player who is destined to have at least a rotational role on the final 53-man roster.

But Lewis found himself sidelined quite a bit this training camp due to knee issues. In fact, he only recently was able to practice. So the coaches gave him some playing time against the Denver Broncos. He recorded no tackles but did defend a pass.

Rams roster at pass rusher in flux

Meanwhile, Obo has been dealing with his own medical malfunctions. Despite a fast start in training camp, Okoronkwo has been sidelined with a stinger which the team has concerns may be more involved.

While this complicates the immediate need to pare down the roster to 53, the fact is that Obo’s medical condition could warrant a three-week transfer to Injured Reserve while doctors determine the cause and cure of his discomfort. That could clear a roster spot for the month of September for the Rams.

The LA Rams saw a huge surge in preseason games from drafted rookie Chris Garrett, perhaps enough to earn the final roster spot. If Obo is moved over to IR, then the last spot will likely be claimed by Justin Lawler. If not? Then Lawler will likely be a practice squad player.

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The odd man out in this scenario appears to be newcomer John Daka. Unless he showed up in a huge way on the practice field, I just don’t have him moving forward with the team at this juncture. Of course, this is all just an educated guess at this point, but I am a bit concerned about the Rams relying on two veteran players with huge question marks over their availability for the season. If the team has a chance to grab a promised outside linebacker off the waiver wire (much like they did on Justin Hollins in 2020), I expect that they will do so.