UDFA III: Edge Rusher
The LA Rams added undrafted rookie outside linebacker Braydon Thomas out of North Dakota St. Standing 6-foot-3 and weighing 260 pounds, Thomas offers that tweener of standing up in a two-point OLB stance or putting a hand in the dirt for a three-point DE stance.
What does the team need for this position?
The LA Rams need fundamental quarterback pressure off the edge. While they were able to address the position once during the draft, the team is counting on numbers to compete for playing time. The Rams continue to face an ever-increasing number of dual-threat quarterbacks, so players who can contain from the outside and get to the quarterback are critical for the success of the defense.
What does this rookie deliver?
Thomas is a high-energy producer who just happens to be a bit raw. He had just two seasons with the North Dakota State Bisons and erupted with nine quarterback sacks in 2021. While it remains to be seen if his senior season can translate into NFL production, he is a powerful young man who has displayed power, speed, and agility.
Who else was available?
Based on the NFL Draft board, the LA Rams did not sign either 6-foot-3 241-pound Alabama edge rusher Christopher Allen, a prospect with multiple medical flags, who had been projected as early as Round 3. The team also did not add 6-foot-2 248-pound Western Michigan edge rusher, Ali Fayad. Fayad had a strong East-West Shrine Bowl but failed to land a spot on the Rams roster
Instant reaction: Thomas will give the LA Rams one more needed defensive weapon. He has the makings of a Morgan Fox-like NFL career.
Draft Grade: C+. Thomas is about par for the course for the LA Rams as an undrafted rookie. But he fills in at a position of need for the team.