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Comparing The Final LA Rams 53-Man Projection And What Changed

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Taking a look at how things shaped up after my final roster projection late last week.

Los Angeles Rams TE Tyler Higbee
Los Angeles Rams TE Tyler Higbee
Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

On Thursday last week, I had my final 53-man roster and practice squad projection. Here’s what differed and what I missed on:

QB

Projected: 3
Final: 3
Projected Final
Jared Goff Jared Goff
Case Keenum Case Keenum
Sean Mannion Sean Mannion

This one was always going to hinge on Mannion. His preseason performance was strong enough to keep him in the action.

RB

Projected: 4
Final: 4
Projected Final
Malcolm Brown Malcolm Brown
Benny Cunningham Benny Cunningham
Todd Gurley Todd Gurley
Chase Reynolds Chase Reynolds

I had this one nailed from mid-July once I took Tre Mason out of the mix. Aaron Green made a nice challenge, but his rookie availability for the practice squad was always going to make it easy to stash him.

WR

Projected: 6
Final: 7
Projected Final
Tavon Austin Tavon Austin
Kenny Britt Kenny Britt
Pharoh Cooper Pharoh Cooper
Bradley Marquez Bradley Marquez
Brian Quick Brian Quick
Nelson Spruce Nelson Spruce
N/A Mike Thomas

Rams Head Coach Jeff Fisher alluded to injuries at the position being part of the reason why the Rams went 7-deep. The question is who would go when they trim down. Brian Quick can’t be stashed on the practice squad, so he’d require an outright release. Mike Thomas would be PS-available, which is why I didn’t have him in the final projection.

TE/FB

Projected: 3
Final: 4
Projected Final
Cory Harkey Cory Harkey
Tyler Higbee Temarrick Hemingway
Lance Kendricks Tyler Higbee
N/A Lance Kendricks

Happy to be wrong on T-Way. Not sure if he’s going to dress early on, but making the roster over the practice squad indicates the team wants to use him this year.

Good.

OL

Projected: 10
Final: 10
Projected Final
Tim Barnes David Arkin
Jamon Brown Tim Barnes
Andrew Donnal Jamon Brown
Rob Havenstein Andrew Donnal
Garrett Reynolds Rob Havenstein
Demetrius Rhaney Pace Murphy
Greg Robinson Demetrius Rhaney
Rodger Saffold Greg Robinson
Cody Wichmann Rodger Saffold
Darrell Williams Cody Wichmann

Injuries always throw a wrench into projections. Couldn’t have guessed Garrett Reynolds and Darrell Williams would go on injured reserve to start the season. Even more difficult would have been taking David Arkin and Pace Murphy to replace them instead of stocking up at another position...

DL

Projected: 9
Final: 8
Projected Final
Michael Brockers Michael Brockers
Aaron Donald Aaron Donald
Dominique Easley Dominique Easley
William Hayes William Hayes
Matt Longacre Matt Longacre
Robert Quinn Robert Quinn
Eugene Sims Eugene Sims
Cam Thomas Ethan Westbrooks
Ethan Westbrooks N/A

To be completely honest, I would’ve had them 10-deep had Quinton Coples not been a surprise cut for the 75-man trimming.

And while Ian Seau had his fans (no doubt helped by his presence on Hard Knocks), the practice squad was always a soft landing spot for him.

LB

Projected: 5
Final: 5
Projected Final
Akeem Ayers Josh Forrest
Brandon Chubb Nic Grigsby
Bryce Hager Bryce Hager
Cameron Lynch Cory Littleton
Alec Ogletree Alec Ogletree

Wut.

I’m still floored here. To shed Ayers and Lynch in favor of Grigsby and Littleton...that’s where I might have expected the offensive linemen who went to IR or some DL vet cuts to make room at LB.

CB

Projected: 5
Final: 5
Projected Final
E.J. Gaines E.J. Gaines
Trumaine Johnson Troy Hill
Lamarcus Joyner Trumaine Johnson
Marcus Roberson Lamarcus Joyner
Coty Sensabaugh Coty Sensabaugh

The Rams went big on the WR and LB youth. Couldn’t extend here for special teams slots.

S

Projected: 5
Final: 4
Projected Final
Maurice Alexander Maurice Alexander
Mark Barron Mark Barron
Christian Bryant Cody Davis
Cody Davis T.J. McDonald
T.J. McDonald N/A

Brian Quick might just have Christian Bryant to thank for his roster spot...

ST

Projected: 3
Final: 3
Projected Final
Johnny Hekker Johnny Hekker
Jake McQuaide Jake McQuaide
Greg Zuerlein Greg Zuerlein

Never in doubt.

Practice Squad

Projected Final
Josh Forrest Isaiah Battle
Morgan Fox Brandon Chubb
Rohan Gaines Blake Countess
Aaron Green Morgan Fox
Nic Grigsby Aaron Green
Temarrick Hemingway Isaiah Johnson
Paul McRoberts Michael Jordan
Ian Seau Terrence Magee
Mike Thomas Paul McRoberts
Duke Williams Bryce Williams

Isaiah Battle? We know Jeff Fisher stubbornly likes to hold on to his selections for years beyond what you could argue against (see: Brian Quick), but that’s...well, maybe one day he’ll actually play NFL football.

And the LBs from my projection made the 53-man in favor of some vets, so that opened up the room for the three newest Rams in Countess, Johnson and Williams.

Overall, not a bad projection. If anything, I didn’t have more surprises which was foolish since there are always surprises.

It’s just hard to predict the unpredictable.