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2019 Los Angeles Rams roster preview: ILB Bryce Hager, special standout

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What’s the shelf life of a special teams star?

NFL: Los Angeles Rams at Seattle Seahawks Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

To call Bryce Hager anything other than an asset to the Los Angeles Rams since being drafted in 2015 would be a disservice. He may not be an All-Pro, but he is an important cog on special teams that has made a number of impact plays.

It’s unfortunate that 2019 may be his last go with the Rams.

Roster Battle

This one is tough since roster battles among special teamers is so hard to predict. I won’t even to pretend to know enough about special teams to know who Hager would be competing against so we’ll jump to the LB depth chart instead.

Cory Littleton will start with Clay Matthews and Micah Kiser sharing some responsibility TBD on behalf of Defensive Coordinator Wade Phillips. Hager has shown flashes in the past when subbing in during Mark Barron’s numerous injuries the past couple of years, so he may have the upper hand there on the competition inside with 2019 NFL Draft seventh-round pick Dakota Allen (roster preview) and undrafted free agents rookies Natrez Patrick (roster preview) and Troy Reeder (roster preview).

Expectations

Pretty standard here. Continue being a star for Special Teams Coordinator John Fassel on special teams. Outside of that, avoid injury and be ready to be the next man up if the injury bug hits the LB corps.

Chances of making the final roster (9/10)

Hager has proven his worth as a special teamer. Unfortunately special teams players are expendable.

I still feel that he has an excellent chance to make the roster, but with a lack of commitment from the Rams past this year, a group of youngsters behind him and established players in front of him, 2019 could be his last in horns.