The LA Rams roster has finally completed a series of transactions that will set up the team for Week 12. As you may recall, we reported on the Rams' intentions to activate both RB Kyren Williams and DB Jason Taylor II for the Week 12 matchup with the Arizona Cardinals. The Rams front office announced corresponding moves to clear a slot for RB Kyren Williams, but no such decision was reported for DB Jason Taylor II.
Today, on Saturday, November 25, 2023, the Rams roster has cleared a roster slot for Taylor. Unfortunately, the team has waived a young and once promising offensive tackle Zachary Thomas to make room:
Thomas was a 6-foot-5 300-pound offensive tackle who was drafted by the Chicago Bears in Round 6 of the 2022 NFL Draft. While he didn't make the Bears roster, he did sign on to their practice squad. After the Rams roster was decimated with injuries last season, the Rams signed Thomas to the active Rams roster off the Chicago Bears practice squad.
In the past year, Thomas has played 36 offensive snaps across two seasons for the Rams. Thomas subbed in for an injured Alaric Jackson in Week 3 at left tackle, but struggled a great deal to block a robust Cincinnati Bengals pass rush that showed almost no concerns over the LA Rams ability to run the football. Unfortunately, the Rams did not challenge the Bengals run defense in that game.
Rams part ways with Thomas is likely a final farewell
The release of Thomas likely indicates a parting of ways form the young offensive lineman. The Rams had other options on the roster. Players like inside linebacker Troy Reeder, defensive back Duke Shelley, and even defensive end Ernest Brown IV are all players who may have been considered as vulnerable for release to make room for DB Jason Taylor II.
With the release of Thomas, the LA Rams roster is down to nine offensive linemen. The Rams continue to roster another four offensive linemen on the practice squad.
With the Rams schedule winding down to only seven games remaining in the 2023 NFL season, the Rams can redistribute roster slots to positional groups that need greater depth as well as to afford opportunities to younger players. Even as the Rams continue to scratch and claw their way back into the discussion for a berth in the NFL Playoffs, the team must also continue to develop young players for 2024.
OT Zachary Thomas is better than his performance against the Cincinnati Bengals. But that is how it goes in the NFL. Some prospects never get a shot to play live snaps. Others, like Thomas, get one shot.