While I have been generally pleased with the LA Rams front office, the Rams draft class of 2023, and the way the young Rams roster has competed this season, there are areas where the Rams seem to have a blind spot. Perhaps no other position that lack of future vision like the Rams backup quarterback position.
By rights, and this is my own speculative position, the Rams should address the position with a clear starting quarterback, a backup quarterback (likely better suited as a veteran) who gives the Rams a solid chance of winning, a third quarterback who is capable of running the Rams scouting team, and a fourth quarterback, most probably carried on the Rams 16-man practice squad, who is either a rookie or a second-year quarterback who the Rams are confident in developing into one of the other three roles in a year or two.
That is not how the Rams set up their roster for the 2023 NFL season.
Front office flurry of changes to the Rams roster
With the imminent signing of Carson Wentz to the Rams roster, the Rams need to free up a roster spot. The Rams have done so with a flurry of transactions announced by the team today:
So what can we decypher about the Rams latest wave of roster moves?
RB Myles Gaskin simply did not work out. Hey, it happens sometimes. To be honest, the fact that the Rams signed Gaskin was a head-scratcher all along. The Rams had rookie RB Zach Evans who was glossed over, and the Rams had already added RB Darrell Henderson Jr. to the roster. Gaskin is a fine running back who was simply a roster casualty due to the numbers game.
DT Cory Durden's release suggests that DT Bobby Brown III is due back after the BYE. Durten was signed to the Rams practice squad on September 19, 2023, and later promoted to the Rams active roster a month later on October 19, 2023. Bobby Brown III was placed on Injured Reserve after Week 5 and has met the minimum of four games requirement before returning to the active roster. I believe that the Rams anticipate his return, necessitating the release of Durden to create the necessary vacancy.
Have Rams solved their QB quandary?
QB Brett Rypien's release was all but mandated with the latest news of the imminent LA Rams signing of QB Carson Wentz. While some interpret Rypien's release as the end of his relationship with the Rams, I suspect that he will be re-signed to the Rams practice squad after he clears waivers. The Rams cannot delay Carson Wentz's progress in learning the Rams offense by toe-tagging him with running the scouting team offense. That role will likely fall to Rypien.
QB Dresser Winn cut from the Rams practice squad. This move, while minor, is another head scratcher. Winn was a respectable quarterback prospect in the 2023 NFL Draft who never heard his name called. That does not necessarily mean that he is not worth developing. With the latest turmoil at the Rams quarterback position, I would have expected the Rams to be more conservative and keep Winn on the practice squad for an emergency quarterback. Clearly, I missed the boat on that one.
Moves that have yet to officially happen. The Rams will sign QB Carson Wentz to the active roster (filling Brett Rypien's slot). I would look for the Rams to bring DT Bobby Brown III off IR (filling Cory Durden's slot). I anticipate the Rams bringing RB Kyren Williams off IR (filling RB Myles Gaskin slot). And finally, I would look for the Rams to sign QB Brett Rypien to the practice squad if and when he clears waivers.
That still necessitates the Rams clearing a roster slot for TE Hunter Long to be restored to the active 53-man roster.
The Rams did not see much from backup QB Brett Rypien in Week 9, but they did learn unequivocally that Rypien is not up to the task of filling in for Stafford. That is vital to know now and has prompted the Rams to make a host of transactions after losing three consecutive games. Even as the hopes of the Rams competing in the postseason are fading fast, today's roster moves could be a turning point for the team. What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments section of our Facebook page.