INDIANAPOLIS, IN - AUGUST 12: Austin Davis #9 of the St. Louis Rams throws a pass against the Indianapolis Colts during a preseason NFL game at Lucas Oil Stadium on August 12, 2012 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Last season, the St. Louis Rams started the year with high hopes for their quarterbacks, such high hopes that they decided to keep just two on the roster. They got caught flat footed later in the year when Sam Bradford was on the shelf with an ankle injury and A.J. Feeley hurt his throwing hand. That was a different leadership cadre. If the Rams do opt to keep a third quarterback, Austin Davis has made a pretty good case for himself in early work with the team.
Head coach Jeff Fisher praised Davis on Tuesday.
"He was real active, has a good feel for what we're doing," Fisher said. "He extended some play, which is good to see, with his legs. They brought some, at times, unique pressures and he had to flush and made some plays running around."
Davis' ability to throw on the run also caught Fisher's eye.
"Yeah, he's very active," Fisher said. "He was very active in college. He just went out and just played and made plays. (He) enjoys playing the game."
That knack for throwing on the run might have something to do with a little side tutorial from Brett Favre, Davis' fellow Southern Mississippi alum who worked with the quarterback some.
Davis completed 12-of-18 passes for 84 yards and an interception in Sunday's loss to the Colts. Despite the INT, he played a solid game against the Colts' second and third teamers. Davis admitted as much in an interview with the Post-Dispatch.
"Obviously, being in the third group in the second half, the defense was very vanilla, but that was good. It was good to get out there and get some reps and some experience, because quarterback is all about experience and progressing. I have a long way to go, but it was a good start."
Based on the lessons from last season, not to mention Bradford's continued insistence that his ankle is still not 100 percent, the Rams might be well served to keep a third quarterback on the roster.
It's hard to justify the roster spot for a player unlikely to see the field, especially given the situation with the offensive line and the lack of proven depth at linebacker.
Keeping a third stringer with some upside would certainly be better than finding a veteran off the scrap heap too. Bradford's future in St. Louis is still cloudy, having another young quarterback to learn the system could help the team get by in a pinch.