The St. Louis Rams bolstered their offensive tackle depth on Thursday when they claimed Oakland Raiders castoff Joe Barksdale off waivers. He slots into a backup rotation along with former Arena League tackle Ty Nsheke.
Barksdale was a third-round pick by the Raiders in 2011. He never saw much playing time, and got caught up in an organizational purge this season under new management.
Even as a prospect, Barksdale had a label as a guy that did not live up to his talent, a perfect Raider pick. He has the size at 6-foot-5, 325 pounds that teams like to see in a tackle. Here's what one scouting report had to say about him:
Barksdale's a backup right tackle prospect with exceptional size but less-than-adequate athleticism for the next level. Uses his strength to stop the bull rush in pass protection, but has a difficult time dealing with double-moves or edge rushers. Can create some running room by walling off defenders but doesn't fire off the ball, get a ton of movement, or excel locating targets at the second level. Has good football IQ, picking up blitzers and staying home against stunts, but limited athleticism still causes him to be a step late at times. Developmental prospect worthy of a late-round pick.
Notice a theme here? The Rams are kind of becoming a second home for coach-up type young players, and it seems to be workings with a handful of players beating expectations under Jeff Fisher's coaches.
As for which player will be out in order to make room for Barksdale, it stands to reason that one of the defensive tackles could go with Michael Brockers nearing a return.