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Rams should raid practice squads for new backup QB

LA needs to bring in competition for Bryce Perkins, John Wolford

NFL: AUG 27 Preseason - Rams at Bengals Photo by Ian Johnson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Injuries have taken a significant toll on the 2022 season for the Los Angeles Rams. While the offensive line is the first injury-riddled unit that comes to mind, LA has been short-handed along the secondary, defensive line, and running back rooms at various times this season.

But with John Wolford rehabbing a neck injury and Matthew Stafford back in concussion protocol, the Rams are on the wrong side of a numbers game at the quarterback position. Bryce Perkins is also a physical runner, and mobile quarterbacks are known to have a higher frequency of injury.

Performance also factors into the equation. While Wolford has been in the Rams program for four years and has been the primary backup for three years, he was overwhelmed by the moment when he was called upon as a starter two weeks ago versus the Arizona Cardinals. Perkins entered the Week 11 contest against the New Orleans Saints in relief of Stafford and performed well, and his mobility opened up running lanes in the traditional ground game.

With Wolford’s play not inspiring much in the way of confidence and with Perkins’ running style putting him at a high exposure for injury, the Rams will likely need to bring in another body at the quarterback position.

A good starting point would be practice squads around the NFL, particularly with teams that have stable situations at the one and two spot on the depth chart. Here are four potential signees the Rams should consider at QB as competition to and insurance for Wolford and Perkins:

1 - Jake Fromm, Washington Commanders

Fromm is probably the best option of the members of this list, and it makes sense to potentially replace one Georgia quarterback (Stafford) with another. Fromm was a three-year starter at Goergia and was selected by the Buffalo Bills in the fifth round of the 2020 NFL Draft.

He was on Buffalo’s 53-man roster for all of 2020, but was relegated to the practice squad in 2021 - where the New York Giants plucked him away after Daniel Jones was injured and Mike Glennon was underperforming. Fromm started two games and appeared in a third that year on a bad Giants team, completing 27 of 60 attempts for 210 yards, 1 TD, and 3 interceptions. He was also sacked 6 times.

There’s no doubt he would have a better supporting cast on this Rams team with Sean McVay instead of Joe Judge, so he’s at least worth a look.

Washington Football Team v New York Giants Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

2 - Tim Boyle, Detroit Lions

After spending three seasons as an understudy to Aaron Rodgers on the Green Bay Packers, Boyle made his way across the NFC North division to the rival Lions in 2021. He started three games in relief of Jared Goff, completing 61 of 94 attempts for 526 yards, 3 TD’s, and 6 interceptions.

Boyle has a big arm, but he often struggles with accuracy and throwing with touch. While he’s turnover-prone, he could still access all areas of the field.

Detroit Lions v Pittsburgh Steelers Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images

3 - Jake Browning, Cincinnati Bengals

The Bengals poached Brandon Allen off the Rams practice squad a couple of years ago, so it’s only time that McVay repays the favor to Zac Taylor by signing Jake Browning. In theory the Bengals and Rams should run similar offensive systems, so perhaps that would make for an easy transition for the third-year QB.

Browning was a four-year starter at Washington and then signed with the Minnesota Vikings as a UDFA. He’s had very limited NFL action, even during two preseasons with Minnesota and another with the Bengals. The Rams got a front row seat to the quarterback this preseason where he went 19 of 24 for 173 yards and a TD.

NFL: AUG 27 Preseason - Rams at Bengals Photo by Ian Johnson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

4 - Chris Oladokun, Kansas City Chiefs

The Pittsburg Steelers drafted two quarterbacks during the 2022 draft - Kenny Pickett in the first round and Chris Oladokun in the seventh. The later was released after the preseason and was added to the practice squad of the Chiefs.

Oladokun spent his first two collegiate seasons at South Florida before transferring to Samford where he earned more playing time. In 2019 the QB threw for over 2,000 yards with 18 TD’s and 7 interceptions. He also added another 493 yards and 8 TD’s on the ground, proving he’s a dual threat.

NFL: MAY 25 Pittsburgh Steelers OTA Offseason Workouts Photo by Brandon Sloter/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images