LA Rams Roster cuts tracker and analysis for 2021 season

Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports /

Okay, grab your cup o’ joe and plop down in your favorite chair (or office chair if you are back to the weekly grind), because today is the beginning of the dreaded annual roster pruning. We’re about to start down the path of the LA Rams roster cuts.  The NFL deadline to get to the 53-man limit is currently established as Tuesday, August 31 at 1:00 pm PT. If you are reading this on the morning of Monday, August 30th, that is just over 24 hours away.

After teams have shed their mandatory 27 players to fit under the 53 man roster, they will be able to adjust their rosters by submitting waiver claims for the just-released players.  The process of submitting a waiver claim is subject to the same priority rules as always, with the team with the worst 2020 NFL record being awarded the player over other claims.

PLAYERS TRADED:                  1
Reserve/COVID-19                 1
LAST UPDATED:                      August 31, 2021, 1:50 pm PT

Rams to keep three QBs

Apparently, the impasse has been broken. There was a pretty lengthy debate among the LA Rams coaches and personnel department over whether to keep QB Bryce Perkins on the 53-man roster. Backup quarterback John Wolford is in the last year of his current contract, and Perkins was very poised and efficient in his preseason work.

Of course, carrying three quarterbacks on the roster this year means one less player on the roster from another position.

Waiver claims and practice squad signings

Any team wishing to claim waived players must submit a claim on or before 1:00 pm PT on Wednesday, September 1. Keep in mind that the roster must remain at or below 53, so any team successfully claiming a player off waivers must have or create a corresponding open roster spot to add the newly claimed player.

As soon as the deadline for submitting a claim for waived players begins, teams can begin to sign available players (not on an active 53-man roster) to their practice squads. Just as in 2020, the practice squad roster can be up to 16-players. Later in the 2020 season, the LA Rams (as many teams did) began to use the extra practice squad roster spots to carry an extra special teams specialist entourage that included an additional long snapper, placekicker, and punter to back up the active roster in the unlikely event of COVID-19 positive testing and subsequent quarantine.

We’ve done our best to discuss and project what we believe to be the most likely 53-man active roster plus practice squad roster projection. We understand that this is just a projection, and almost no projections are 100 percent accurate. However, it’s a good starting point from which to start the discussion, and there is a bit of analysis, along with some rationalization, as to why the roster transactions are presented with that outcome.

New factors to 2021

Much of the wildcard forces that will impact the LA Rams 2021 roster decisions will come down to where the Rams feel vulnerable to injuries, where the team can optimize the production with a good rotation, and how comfortable the coaching staff is with the starters and their ability to stay fresh over a 17-game season.

One position group that was heavy on the roster for 2020 was the offensive line, where the team carried 10 players on the active roster. Will the team do so in 2021? Or will new offensive line coach Kevin Carberry be content with fewer players who will backup multiple starters? That will be an important factor because the offensive line could make up to 20 percent of the team’s active roster in 2021.

Another new factor is the perception of which positions can be restocked via the 2022 NFL Draft. Early reports indicate that the 2022 wide receiver group will not be as deep or as talented as either the 2020 or 2021 draft class. That will likely play a huge role in how many players the Rams will keep at that position group this year.

Contract conversations

Another set of factors for the roster decisions will be the salary cost of the player, which draft pick was invested in acquiring the player, and the number of years remaining on their contract. Let’s cover each aspect here:

The salary cost of players means that if the LA Rams can get equal or nearly equal production from a lower-cost player, the team will likely opt for the less expensive player. This aspect is likely why the Rams are looking long and hard at the punter position. Johnny Hekker’s $4.97 million is far in excess of Corey Bojorquez’s $1.02 million. (salary information as per  Is Hekker truly nearly five times better than Bojorquez as the salary cost suggests? Likely no, and that is why the conversation to go with Corey Bojorquez as the team’s starting punter is taking place today.

Another hot topic involved in the roster discussions will involve whether or not a player was drafted, and where. Unless the evidence to go in a different direction is irrefutable, no team willingly calls out their personnel department by cutting recently drafted players who may perform above expectation elsewhere. Frequently, early-round players who face almost no chance of playing time on their original team are traded, not cut, to another team.

Finally, the duration of the player’s existing contract will weigh in on any roster conversations. Decisions that impact the roster will likely consider how much longer that player is under contract. The LA Rams’ current situation at inside linebacker is a good example. Even if one of the veterans on the roster is outplaying rookie Ernest Jones today, the fact that they are in their last contract year compared to Jones’s rookie status will likely play a significant role as to who the Rams decide to go with.

Okay, we’ve chatted about what goes into the back story of roster cuts. Now, here you go with our roster cuts tracker:


Soon thereafter, The Athletic’s Jourdan Rodrigue reported:

On Tuesday, we learned:

That was quickly followed by:

By 9:20 am, another cut was reported:

The Rams traded Corey Bojorquez to the Green Bay Packers.

The August 31st roster cuts were confirmed by the LA Rams official website transaction report.


Below is our ongoing tracking of roster cuts to get to the 53-man roster so far:



Running back (2)

Otis Anderson Jr.
Xavier Jones (waived/injured)

Tight End (1)

Kendall Blanton

Wide receiver (4)

WR/KR Jeremiah Haydel
Landon Akers
Trishton Jackson
J.J. Koski

Jeremiah Haydel was handling almost all kick return duties after the team parted ways with RB Raymond Calais. As such, Haydel could be a candidate to return on the team’s practice squad.
Landon Akers was the other UDFA rookie wide receiver.

Offensive lineman (4)

OG Jordan Meredith
OG Jeremiah Kolone
OT Chandler Brewer
OT Max Pircher (will be resigned as IPP practice squad exempt)

Jordan Meredith impressed a lot of persons during camp, and per Pro Football Focus, was the Rams’ best offensive lineman when facing the LA Chargers. He would be a nice player to stash on the team’s practice squad.

Safety (3)

Troy Warner
Jake Gervase
Tyler Hall

Cornerback (4)

Brontae Harris
Donovan Olumba
Dont’e Deayon
Kareem Orr

Brontae Harris certainly got a lot of work in preseason games. For the most part, he did a respectable job. He could be signed to the practice squad.

Outside linebacker (2)

John Daka
Justin Lawler

Inside linebacker (2)

Christian Rozeboom
Micah Kiser

Although a 2020 undrafted free agent signing, Rozeboom displayed remarkable progress and performed well in preseason games. He could be re-signed to the team’s practice squad.

Defensive lineman (3)

Eric Banks
Earnest Brown IV
Marquise Copeland

Eric Banks had performed well for the LA Rams in preseason games and could be a player brought back on the practice squad. This could also be a calculated risk move, as the team may be leveraging to get A’Shawn Robinson to short-term IR. To do so, the roster must be at 53-man at 1:00 pm PT today, August 31st. Then, the team can designate Robinson to the IR list, and after he clears waivers, re-sign Eric Banks.

Special teams (1)

Corey Bojorquez

Must Read. LA Rams: Projecting the final 53 man Rams roster for 2021. light

Even as the LA Rams slowly deliberate their roster cuts, other teams are making progress of their own. We will continue to update our waiver wire observations, which you can catch by following us on Twitter: @RamblinFan. Also, be sure to check back often. To save you time in checking on the latest news, we’ve placed the update status early in the article to indicate the latest update:

PLAYERS TRADED:                  1
Reserve/COVID-19                 1
LAST UPDATED:                        August 31, 2021, 1:50 pm PT

And we’ll follow up the roster cuts with a Practice Squad tracker, as well as insights as to what the roster moves mean for the Rams in the 2021 season.