It's almost time for the Rams 2nd preseason game. Last week the Rams looked good destroying the Colts and they will be looking to do the same this week against the Titans. The Titans have solid depth on their team, so this game should be a good measuring stick for the Rams.
Of course, the final score doesn't mean nothing in preseason. The Rams are looking to see which players can step up and play. There are many position battles and spots still open for this team. The Rams rookies, young players, and new players will be looking to earn a spot on the depth chart.
The players I listed aren't listed in order, but all of them are worth watching this week.
1. Donnie Avery, Jersey number 17
Overview: The Rams 2nd round pick in 2008. Avery had two good years with what he was working with in 2008 and 2009. In 2010 Avery was slated to be his breakout season, he bulked up and was looking good in camp. Sadly against the Patriots Avery got injured running a deep route.
Going into this season, Avery will have to have a strong preseason if he is to make the team. This week, should be a good starting point for the Rams to evaluate how Donnie Avery will perform.
Why you should watch him: The Rams struggled without a deep threat and if his speed is back, he can add a lot to the team.
2. Justin King, Jersey number 21
Overview: Justin King looked impressive, before his rookie season was ended with an injury. He was the second fastest player in the 2008 draft. This year he will be entering his fourth season, but it's really his third. Based on the little he shown in 2008, he has been underachieving recently. The Rams are hoping that he shows the potential that he flashed, now that Jerome Murphy is injured for awhile. Spags said King was probably having the best camp out of any player. That could be true, but if he can't produce in games does it really matter?
Why you should watch him: He could see a lot of playing time this season. Plus he has to rebound from last weeks game right?
3. Robert Quinn, Jersey number 94
Overview: Robert Quinn was the Rams 1st round pick this year. He missed all of last year with UNC, because of "breaking rules". The Rams drafted him to compliment Chris Long. He has a lot of talent and a couple of moves to get pass the blocker.
What will hurt him this season is that lost year, and all the time he missed this year, because of the lockout. He looked okay last week with all the factors he's going against. He could have a good rookie year, but I think his second year will be that good year. That doesn't mean he will have a bad season, it should resemble Chris Long's rookie year.
Why you should watch him The future is bright with Quinn, it will be interesting to see how he develops as the season goes on.
4. Jabara Williams, Jersey number 52
Overview: Williams is the kind of player that teams want in a project. What he lacks in size, he makes up for with athleticism. He came from a small college Stephen F Austin, but could eventually make a big contribution. Last week, against the Colts he caught my eye. He didn't look bad in the 4th quarter and he was always flying around the ball. He still has a long way to go, but he is the most interesting defensive gem to me.
Why you should watch him: He might not be develop into a great player in the NFL, but his special teams play and upside will help him stick on the Rams.
5. Michael Hoomanawanui, Jersey 86
Overview: Big Mike should be an important part of the Rams offense. The Rams will be using a 2 TE look more this season. Big Mike and Lance Kendricks could become a formidable combo for opposing defenses. Big Mike is a good blocker and although he isn't the fastest he knows how to get open. The potential is there, but he is kind of injury prone. If Mike can escape the injury bug, he should have a good season.
Why you should watch him: The Rams offense will use a lot of 2 TE sets this season. Big Mike is a good player if healthy
6. Jerious Norwood, Jersey number 34
Overview: The Rams brought in Norwood to bring a home run threat to the Rams. The Rams were missing that umph, and Norwood should be able to bring it. Over the years, he shown that he is a threat whenever he touches the ball. However he has also shown that he gets injured a lot. He is coming off an injury, but he has shown flashes of what he can do already.
Why you should watch him: The biggest question is how fast will he play coming off an injury. If he keeps showing flashes during the preseason, he most likely will do it in the regular season also.
7. Austin Pettis, Jersey number 83
Overview: Pettis was a good player for Boise St. The Rams selected him in the 3rd round. He is a big player and had great hands in college. Pettis lacks speed, but he is a pretty solid route runner. He can still get better though. The main reason he is on this list is because of last week's game. Honestly he just didn't look good, I wasn't at the scrimmage a couple of weeks ago, but I heard Pettis didn't impress there either.
It's hard playing in the NFL and it's even harder when you're a rookie. He should step out of his funk soon and start producing for the Rams. Don't expect him to have a great rookie season, but he should be a solid player when he gets in the game. This week we should know more about Pettis' ability.
Why you should watch him: The Rams have a great battle at the WR spot. Pettis might not start, but since he won't get cut it will be good to see him start playing well as soon as possible.
8. Ben Leber, Jersey number 59
Overview: Leber is coming to the Rams from the Vikings. Leber is a solid outside linebacker. He might be old, but last season he was one of the best outside linebackers in coverage. If Leber can cover as well as he did last season, the Rams would have a better defense than last season's.
Why you should watch him: The Rams really needed an upgrade at outside linebacker. It will be interesting to see if he is it.
9. Darian Stewart, Jersey number 20
Overview: Stewart was an undrafted free agent last season. However he impressed the Rams so much that he stuck on the roster. Stewart is developing into a good safety. He was a good asset to the team last season, but is he good enough to be a starter? He is on the second team, but it seems like he has more upside than Craig Dahl. Stewart has a good chance to start for the Rams eventually, but coach Spags won't just throw Stewart out on the field because of potential. He's looked good, but would you make a second year undrafted free agent a starter?
Why you should watch him: He might not start, but the Rams will most likely play him more than last season. How much they play him will depend on how well he plays in the preseason.
10. Greg Salas, Jersey number 87
Overview: Salas was drafted by the Rams in the fourth round this season. In college he had sure hands and plays with aggressiveness. In fact he should remind you a lot of Danny Amendola. Salas has been impressing at camp also. He didn't play last week, but he will play against the Titans.
Why you should watch him: Who doesn't want to see if he is as good as people say he is? One Amendola is good, but two would be even better.
11. The rookies in the secondary
The Rams have many players in the secondary that are rookies. A few of them are unrestricted, but they looked good against the Colts. With Jerome Murphy out for a long time, you have to think one or two of the corners will make the team on the active roster or practice squad. The Rams also drafted DBs, but they didn't seperate themselves from the undrafted players.. Everyone of these players will have to make a name for themselves on special teams.