Quick, what sets St. Louis Rams rookie safety Jermale Hines apart from the other safeties on the team? He was drafted. St. Louis picks Hines in the fifth-round this year, and he plays with a group of players that were all undrafted.
Hines saw snaps through the entire game last week. Replacing a linebacker in the nickel and other packages against the Titans. Clearly, the Rams want to see what kind of player they have in Hines, and given the amount of playing time he received last week, they have him penciled onto the 53-man roster.
Big ticket free agent acquisition Quintin Mikell entered the league as an undrafted free agent. Darian Stewart, who figures to start next to Mikell this week, was a UDFA pickup last year. Craig Dahl, last year's start that was replaced by Stewart, was an undrafted find when Spagnuolo was coaching the Giants. James Butler, you guessed it, an undrafted free agent in 2005.
Given their track record for where they find safety help, it speaks volumes about the opinion on Jermale Hines. Above, I mentioned five safeties; however, the Rams are likely to keep just four. Of course, that could change this year with a thin group at cornerback. Just looking at the list, it would seem that Butler's the odd man out. I suspect we'll see based on playing time and performance this week.