8 Rams who are already turning heads at OTAs

Los Angeles Rams Ryan Wendell, Steve Avila
Los Angeles Rams Ryan Wendell, Steve Avila / Jayne Kamin-Oncea/GettyImages
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IV: DE/OLB Jared Verse

If there is one rookie who has all the pressure in the world on his shoulders, former Florida State Seminoles rookie DE/OLB Jared Verse is that guy. The LA Rams defense knew that entering the 2024 NFL Draft, this team must cobble some form of response to address the absence of All-Pro defensive lineman Aaron Donald, and the first step in that direction was to select Verse with the 19th overall pick in Round 1 of the 2024 NFL Draft.

Now, the entire defense, and not Verse alone, will be looking to do a much better job in 2024 at rushing the passer than it did in 2023, and Jared Verse has to be expected to deliver part of the solution. But this may not be as great of a challenge as we initially suspected.

Verse is the first 'first rounder' to join the Rams roster as a rookie since the team hired Sean McVay to be the team's head coach in 2017, and by all accounts from OTAs, he is every bit the part. He is a polished no-nonsense pass rusher who might as well be inked into the starting spot opposite teammate Byron Young already. Young led all rookie edge rushers in 2023 with 8.0 quarterback sacks, but Verse could match or best that number this year.

Verse is a powerful young man who stands 6-foot-4 and weighs 260 pounds as a rookie. He could bulk up throughout training camp, getting as big as 270 pounds by the time this season starts. Even as a rookie, he is a solid match for offensive tackles. He has a complete arsenal of pass rush moves, is big and strong enough to withstand the physicality of the 17-game season, and has plenty of time to learn the extent of his role by the time the season starts.

Verse and Young may be the youngest pass rusher tandem in the NFL, but they could prove to be one of the best.