Today is the day that the LA Rams needed to shave the number of players on their roster from 90 to 85. And the team has done so. But as I read the names from the team’s official website, I have to admit a bit of astonishment at who the team has listed in the first wave of cuts. I get it, the team had to send some guys away. And, believe it or not, early dismissal allows those players to connect with a new team that may be in need of additional reinforcements.
Waived/No Recall P Cameron Dicker, OT Adrian Ealy, QB Luis Perez, TE Jamal Pettigrew, and DB Caesar Dancy-Williams. The NFL Deadline for teams to reduce their offseason rosters from 90 players to 85 was 1:00 pm PT today, Tuesday, August 16, 2022.
We know that the LA Rams added QB Luis Perez to help with the burden of keeping receivers busy through training camp. The fact that Perez did not take a single preseason snap in the first contest confirmed that he was added as a camp body.
The second cut is a bit of a mild surprise. The LA Rams loaded up on defensive backs, but Caesar Dancy-Williams had a solid background for versatility in the Wisconsin Badgers defense. The belief is that he might have offered the Rams defense a similar level of versatility. Unfortunately, he suffered from a deep roster in the secondary and did not see action in the Rams’ first preseason game.
The third cut is both expected and a surprise. The Rams have now cut promising McNeese State tight end, Jamal Pettigrew, which confirms that the team is quite happy with their tight end situation as it is currently shaping up. He is a skyscraper, standing 6-foot-7. But his 245-pounds is about 20 to 30 pounds lighter than he needs to be in order to perform at the team’s quite physical tight end position.
The next player among the early cuts is offensive tackle, Adrian Ealy. Ealy was a player who signed on with the LA Rams in 2021 during the team’s COVID-19 breakout and was re-signed to the Reserve futures contract as soon as the Rams emerged from Super Bowl LVI. The surprise in his early release stems from the fact that he has been with the team for nearly a year. While the Rams appear to be rather deep at offensive line, Ealy’s early dismissal suggests that he was not impressing the coaching staff as much as once thought.
The final cut is a downright shocker. The LA Rams did not draft a punter, despite the release of veteran punter Johnny Hekker. In his wake, the Rams signed veteran punter Riley Dixon and then proceeded to add backup punter/kicker to the roster after the 2022 NFL Draft. Dicker handled all of the team’s kicking and punting duties in the first preseason game, and with the exception of one touchback miscue, seemed to showcase a solid, if not highlight reel, performance.
So much for heated competition at the punter position, eh?
The next deadline for teams to trim their rosters will be Tuesday, August 23, 2022. At that time, the LA Rams must get their roster down from 85 to 80. The LA Rams have additional tough decisions to make in one week’s time. But for now, we’ve cited who the Rams have decided to release. We will need to assess what that means for the players who have survived the first wave of cuts, and how that will impact the team’s next preseason game.