How will LA Rams roster be reassembled in 2023?

Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /

The LA Rams roster, thanks to an injury-battered season, has been forced to onboard quite a few free agents to this roster. Due to the manner in which they have been added, some were claimed via the NFL waiver wire with multiple years remaining on their contracts. But, for the most part, the Rams’ front office has signed players to a one-year bridge contract.

That is a contract to keep the player on the team through the season’s end. Well, here we are, facing the last game of the 2022 NFL season for the LA Rams. So the question is, what comes next? Per, the LA Rams already start the 2023 NFL season with a deficit of over ($3 million). As we have seen in the past, the ability of the Rams’ front office to make that salary cap deficit disappear will not pose a problem. But what does complicate the matter is who the Rams will prioritize to bring back next season.

Some good news for that topic is the fact that the Rams carry just $2.9 million of dead cap space in 2023. Current projections for the 2023 salary cap are approximately $227.5 million. That means that the Rams will have enough wiggle room to free up space. Now the only question is, for who?

ERFAs? Check. RFA? Check. UFA? Well, it gets complicated . . .

Of the 2023 Rams projected free agents, projects seven as ERFAs, one as an RFA, and 16 as UFAs.

It’s safe to presume that all 7 Exclusive Restricted Free Agents will be re-signed. That includes LB Travin Howard, S/LB Jake Gervase, DT Marquise Copeland, DT/OLB Michael Hoecht, QB Bryce Perkins, DB Shaun Jolly, and LB Christian Rozeboom. I also expect that the LA Rams will re-sign RFA John Wolford, albeit perhaps not at the cost of a Qualifying Tender Offer. That leaves the LA Rams weighing a decision on their 16 unrestricted free agents.

Right now, the LA Rams are projected to have 43 players under contract in 2023, but two of those projected players are A’Shawn Robinson and Troy Hill, who are simply contracted with void years in 2023. So the true Rams roster has 41 players under contract. With the Rams re-signing seven ERFA and one RFA player, that brings the team to 49 players. 10 draft picks bring the Rams’ roster up to 59 players. From that point, the Rams have 31 final positions remaining to get to their 90-man training camp limit.

Of that amount, many of the team’s practice squad will sign Reserve/Future contracts. The Rams have 16 players on the current practice squad, and I believe that the team will certainly extend offers to all to come back in 2023.

15 player slots remaining. Will the Rams spend the money necessary to extend a player like Baker Mayfield? Perhaps. But as we have found in almost every offseason, the Rams are a bit frugal with the pursestrings when it comes to bringing back veterans. Because the Rams have invested in a rather sophisticated data analytics department, the team has come to base their decisions on who to extend and who to test their value in the NFL Free Agency market on their data metrics.

We’ll break this topic down in far more detail in the weeks to come. But even now, the Rams do not appear to be hard-pressed to extend any of their 16 unrestricted free agents. As we have come to learn in the past, if the Rams wanted to extend players, most of the extensions have already been signed long before the end of the season.

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