It's already now or never for these five seldom seen vets on the Rams roster

It's 'Get your rear in gear!' time for these five seldom seen veteran on the LA Rams roster, or they may not keep a spot on the team.
Los Angeles Rams Minicamp
Los Angeles Rams Minicamp / Jayne Kamin-Oncea/GettyImages
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III: Tre Tomlinson

It seems almost disingenuine to name DB Tre Tomlinson on this list in just his second season. After all, he hardly was given enough opportunities to learn on the football field and showcase his stuff in pass coverage. Ah, but therein lies the rub. Although a Day 3 drafted rookie, Tomlinson did make the team's 53-man roster. But earning a roster spot carries the weight of stepping up and performing if and when the coach needs a player to step up.

I'm not sure that we can claim that Tomlinson did in 2023.

Just to revisit the season, the secondary made use of 11 different players in various roles and for varying number of defensive snaps last season. Of those 11 different defensive backs, the only players who played in fewer defensive snaps were DB Shaun Jolly and Jason Taylor II.

Tomlinson did hold a significant role in special teams on coverage teams. That could and should bode well for Tre' Tomlinson's second season vying for playing time in the Rams secondary. And standing 5-foot-9 while tipping the scales at 177 pounds, Tomlinson is a perfect padawan for Jedi Master DB Darious Williams, who also stands 5-foot-9 and weighs 192 pounds.

Can solid special teams play be enough?

Tomlinson saw action in just 45 defensive snaps and 319 special team snaps in 2023. Tomlinson made six tackles on coverage units, and 7 tackles on defense. But when targeted, he allowed five of six passes to find their mark. In looking back at his rookie performance, his limited use makes perfect sense. He seldom seemed to be comfortable in his role on the field.

While the game may have slowed down a bit for Tomlinson for his second NFL season, the team certainly made the climb to a significant role in the secondary far more difficult to attain. The team allowed Ahkello Witherspoon, Duke Shelley, Jordan Fuller, and John Johnson III to test their market worth via free agency. So more defensive snaps to go around, right?

Not so fast. The Rams signed veteran DBs Darious Williams, Tre'Davious White, and Kamren Curls in free agency, all of whom are expected to start for the team in 2024. The team also drafted former Miami DB Kamren Kinchens, a ball-hawking safety who is expected to push hard for playing time this season.

It's not impossible for Tre' Tomlinson to vy for a rotational role in 2024. He simply has much stiller competition and smaller odds of success.