clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

2016 Rams Roster Preview: LB Darreon Herring Needs To Start Making Plays

Darreon Herring has the intelligence to play linebacker, but does he have the athleticism and dynamic ability to be a difference maker?

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Darreon Herring hails from Vanderbilt, the least SEC school in the SEC. He was a three-year starter for the Commodores, though he did not improve much on the stat sheet from year to year.

Over the course of his senior season, Herring posted just 34 solo tackles and 3.5 tackles for loss. He does not have the speed to be a play maker, even at the collegiate level. Herring has to rely on his awareness, fundamentals and strength to be a viable player.

Roster Battle

Herring is buried behind a handful of quality linebackers. He does not have the athleticism to play all three linebacker spots. He can not cover enough ground to be a weak side backer. Aside from players likely to make the roster, Cory LittletonBrandon ChubbIan Seau, Zack Hodges, Matthew Wells and Cameron Lynch stand in Herring's way. Most of these players provide more of a flexible, explosive dynamic than Herring does.

If the Rams carry a third true middle linebacker behind Alec Ogletree and Bryce Hager, the battle comes down to Chubb and Herring. Herring could also battle for a strong side linebacker spot, but he does not have the power to truly be a threat there. At middle linebacker, he can defend the run with his mental acuity.


It's tough to imagine Herring being a beneficial special teams piece. He does not possess the long speed or change of direction to create separation on his runs. As a linebacker, he is sound enough with his fundamentals and reading of the game that he can be a serviceable run defender. In pass coverage, he does not have the athleticism to make up for his mistakes.

One false step in coverage for him could mean a huge play for the offense.

Chances of Making Final Roster (1/10)

Herring is not versatile enough to be a great depth player and is not athletic enough to be a legitimate starter at any point. If the Rams really want a smart presence at the back end of their linebacker rotation, more power to them, but Herring provides little else outside of his brain. The Rams have too many other intriguing linebackers for Herring to make the cut.