NFL announces no supplemental draft for NFL teams in 2022

Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports /

It seems a bit awkward to mention any NFL draft on an LA Rams-focused website, and downright foolish to mention anything about the NFL supplemental draft. But here I go, because it’s the latest news from the NFL and, believe it or not, it may have some bearing on the LA Rams‘ immediate future.

The supplemental draft was constructed in 1977 to address those players who, for one reason or another, fell through the cracks for eligibility to participate in the annual NFL Draft. So the NFL and NFLPA created the supplemental draft to allow young men who wanted a chance to play in the NFL to have their own onramp to compete.

Since its inception, 46 players have entered the NFL via the supplemental draft. But no players will have access to the NFL via that route this year.

Throughout its history, only one player from the supplemental draft has earned a spot in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He is wide receiver Chris Carter, who cost the Philadelphia Eagles a fourth-round draft pick to select him.

Eight players chosen from the supplemental draft have earned at least one Pro Bowl nod: Bernie Kosar (drafted in 1985), Cris Carter (1987), Bobby Humphrey (1989), Rob Moore (1990), Mike Wahle (1998), Jamal Williams (1998), Ahmad Brooks (2006), and Josh Gordon (2012).

While some NFL teams have been quite active in the history of the supplemental draft, that has not been the case for the Rams franchise. Their lone occasion to participate in the supplemental draft was the selection of Clemson offensive tackle Isaiah Battle in 2015. Battle was signed by the St. Louis Rams but never made the Rams roster. He competed for a variety of teams in an effort to stick with an NFL roster, but he was finally cut by the Carolina Panthers in 2019.

So how does this affect the LA Rams now? The last player to be chosen in the supplemental draft occurred in 2019 when the Arizona Cardinals successfully drafted DB Jalen Thompson. Thompson has been a true gem in the Cardinals’ defense, putting up 121 tackles, three interceptions, and breaking up seven passes. The absence of supplemental drafts may not directly impact the LA Rams. But no NFC West rival will get surprisingly better as a result of adding a key play as a result.

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