The LA Rams entered their Week 11 BYE week with an ineffective offense, an unconfident defense, and special teams play that has certainly not been special so far this season. But all of the chaos that preceded the LA Rams BYE is dwarfed by the complete anarchy that is the 2021 NFL season of the Houston Texans so far.
One of the more shocking events of the season was the sudden and surprising waiver of running back Phillip Lindsay. Lindsay was in the fourth and final season of his rookie contract and had two 1000+ rushing yard seasons with the Denver Broncos. In fact, in 2018 he not only rushed for over 1000 yards but was active as both a kick returner and a punt returner.
Now, he’s looking for work.
Yes, the LA Rams have loaded up at the position. But Phillip Lindsay is a special sort of running back who could make a difference. The Texans released him simply due to a very crowded backfield, and the expectation of rebuilding the entire roster after this season.
Entering Week 12, the LA Rams have 5-foot-8 208-pound Darrell Henderson, 6-foot-1 225-pound Buddy Howell, and 5-foot-11 215-pound Sony Michel. While Lindsay is 5-foot-8 and 190-pounds, he is very versatile in both the running and passing game. If nothing else, giving him a try-out on punt return duties could save the Rams from playing WR Cooper Kupp at that position, and avoiding potential injuries.
Lindsay runs a 4.39-second 40-yard dash. In terms of workload, he has only seen action in 103 offensive snaps this year. In contrast, the Rams have played Sony Michel 183 offensive snaps over the same time frame.
Lindsay will not be a savior for the Rams rushing attack. He may not even have an opportunity to make an impact on the Rams’ offense. But he could be an impact player for the team on punt returns and kick returns.
Rams Free Agency
In terms of connections to the LA Rams, he was a teammate of RB Buddy Howell earlier this year on the Texans’ roster, For that matter, he was the former teammate of veteran outside linebacker Von Miller and Justin Hollins. And he has the chops to assume the role of a featured running back and do very well at it.
Those types of young players are not frequently available at this time of year and are what the Rams free agency department seeks on the waiver wire even after the trade deadline has long since expired.
Like many players who are released this time of year, it’s easy to pooh-pooh the player and form an unchanging opinion that the team doesn’t need to recycle a player from another team’s waiver wire. But the LA Rams are one of the most successful teams in the NFL thanks to that very route to building their own roster.
So, don’t be shocked if LA Rams kick tires on Texans’ RB Phillip Lindsay. In fact, if you think about it, you should hope that they do.