Reason II: It takes one to coach one
The LA Rams have not exactly loaded up on any athletic type of offensive linemen since parting ways with Coach Kromer. But Coleman Shelton has been their exception. He arrived from the Arizona Cardinals practice squad, and I have been one of his biggest fans since that moment. He is carved from the same cord of wood as former Colts great Jeff Saturday, and Philadelphia Eagles current Jason Kelce.
He's smaller, but he moves very well, and you can often find him downfield blocking linebackers or even defensive backs on running plays. The challenge has been that he is often the only guy doing so. Well, if you look closely, former NFL offensive lineman-turned coach Ryan Wendell is a similar build to Coleman Shelton. That could mean good things for the Rams newly re-signed offensive lineman.
So why was Shelton a free agent?
Rams last contract had player option year
To understand that, you have to look back to the 2022 off-season, when the LA Rams re-signed Shelton to an incredibly team-friendly two-year contract with one hiccup. The contract allowed Coleman Shelton the option to void that contract after one season. And, showing up as what was arguably one of the LA Rams best starting offensive line in 2022, he opted out of his second year as it paid less than $2 million.
Shelton bet on himself on that contract. Prior to that point, Shelton was a spot starter who was a backup on the rather robust LA Rams roster. But the Rams lost both OT Andrew Whitworth and OG Austin Corbett, and Shelton had enough confidence to believe that not only would he win a starting role, but that he would do so with enough competency that he would make himself too valuable to lose. And when it came to that, he won his gamble.