The LA Rams roster throughout the 2021 NFL season, specifically the 16-man practice squad, was subject to a caveat Plus-one throughout the year. That Plus-one referred to Italian-born Max Pircher, an offensive lineman assigned to the LA Rams via the NFL’s International Player Pathway (IPP) program
The NFL’s IPP program is more than hood ornamentation or some dodgy marketing ploy to sell international viewership. The NFL’s IPP has tangible concrete results, with New England Patriots FB Jakob Johnson and Philadelphia Eagles OT Jordan Mailata joining Buffalo Bills defensive end Efe Obada at their 1000 career snaps. Washington Commanders TE Sammis Reyes, a Chilean native, has made it to their 53-man active roster.
Truth be told, the NFL’s IPP is one of the most successful talent pools that eventually yield NFL starters. The fact is that the program chooses elite athletes from all over the world to compete and eventually join an NFL roster. This year, 13 such world-class athletes have been invited to participate in this program.
Max Pircher will take a major stride forward in 2022
The LA Rams participate in this program and are currently working with 6-foot-7 300-pound native Italian-born Max Pircher. While Pircher participated in training camp and all pre-season activities, he only made it as far as the team’s practice squad for the 2021 NFL season.
While the Rams appear to be set at the offensive line this year, so few mention the fact that the Rams have a 6-foot-7 300-pound workhorse who had spent an entire season being coached up by the LA Rams staff, working alongside veteran Andrew Whitworth, and working against defensive standouts like Aaron Donald, A’Shawn Robinson, Leonard Floyd, and Von Miller.
And he has a Super Bowl ring to boot.
There is a mirage about the quality of the NFL Draft, as though the newly arrived will be able to pick up everything instantly and make an immediate impact on the team. When it comes to offensive linemen, it’s more likely to take at least a year or two with the team to refine raw techniques that may or may not have been covered at college.
Working with athletically gifted but technique raw has afforded the LA Rams coaching staff to shape and mold players into the best Rams-spec fits. With a year of getting coaching by the Rams’ staff under his belt, Max Pircher has already benefitted from an entire year of refining footwork, handwork, and lateral movement to synch up with his teammates.
A 2022 starter? Perhaps not. But look for Max Pircher to make considerable strides in 2022.