The Los Angeles Rams face off with their roommates this Sunday, taking on the Los Angeles (nee San Diego) Chargers in the battle for SoFi Stadium supremacy. In addition to the teams co-tenancy, they also share history with a handful of players.
It’s not unusual for a new coach to leverage his inside knowledge on certain players from his past and add them to his roster. Said players provide a measure of confidence, whether as plug-and-play starters or as part of a rotation.
So it isn’t really out of the ordinary for the Bolts to have six ex-Rams crossing the field to join Brandon Staley, To refresh fans memories, here’s a look at the turncoats, with their L.A. tenure in parentheses.
One of the few Rams coaching additions that wasn’t part of the Gruden coaching tree, or had a past history with Sean McVay. Staley had seven coaching stops in the college ranks (Northern Illinois, St. Thomas, Hutchinson, Tennessee, James Madison, and John Carrol) starting as a graduate assistant and finishing as a defensive coordinator.
Vic Fangio brought Staley to the NFL in 2017 as his outside linebackers coach for the Chicago Bears and followed Fangio to Denver in 2019, in the same role. The next year, L.A. hired him to replace Wade Phillips as Defensive Coordinator and the Rams went on to lead the league in least points and total yardage allowed. Staley parlayed this effort into the Chargers top job. Over his two seasons, his overall record is 18-14 and has secured a 2022/3 playoff berth this season.
Defensive tackle Sebastian Joseph-Day (2019-2021)
SJD jumped locker rooms at SoFi Stadium after the Rams 2021 Super Bowl winning season. He signed a three-year $24 million free agent contract and has been a bright spot on the Bolts defensive front.
He has started 14 games, missing only the Week 14 game versus the Miami Dolphins and is putting up the best numbers of his career in snaps (631, 72%), tackles (51), tackles for loss (8), quarterback hits (5), and forced fumbles (1). Joseph-Day scored his first NFL points, recording a safety in Week 6.
A popular player during his tenure in L.A., on and off the field, Turf Show Times did a feature on his efforts giving back to the community in February. SJD has own Youtube channel, “Dine n’ Bash”, supporting local Los Angeles restaurants and has done co-hosting work on Mike Tyson’s podcast.
Tight end Gerald Everett (2017-2020)
The Rams had big plans for Everett when they drafted him in the second round at #44 of the 2017 draft. He hoped to capitalize on his athleticism and potential playmaking ability, but never really showed out, struggling with drops, blocking and route running.
L.A. didn’t offer Everett a second contract and he moved on to the Seattle Seahawks for the 2021 season and his numbers in the Great Northwest topped his yearly previous totals across the board. He signed a free agent deal with Chargers for 2022.
Everett has fought through a groin injury this season and didn’t record a touch in 37 snaps last week, but is still on track to post the best stats of his career, 532 yards on 52 catches, two touchdowns, and 10.2 yards per catch
Running back Sony Michel (2021)
A big part of the Rams Super Bowl run in 2021, Michel stepped up for 1063 total yards. 845 yards on the ground, 128 through the air, and 90 on kick returns. He was also a stellar pass blocker in the backfield.
As good as his story was, L.A. didn’t re-sign him and he moved on to the Miami Dolphins and was released in final cuts. The Chargers swooped in signed him to a contract for 2022. His action has been limited to 125 snaps, 36 rushes for 106 yards, and nine catches for 53 yards. Michel has not seen action since Week 11 and has been a gameday inactive the past few weeks.
Defensive end Morgan Fox (2016-2020)
Fox is on pace for the best season of his NFL career, he’s started 10 games and is looking for highs in snaps (517), tackles (33), sacks (5.5), tackles for loss (6) and quarterback hits (10). According to Pro Football Reference, he has not missed a tackle all season.
Coming out of Division II Colorado State-Pueblo, Fox was signed by the Rams under the Jeff Fisher regime as an undrafted free agent. After not seeing much action as a rookie, and when L.A. moved on from Fisher, he earned himself a role. From 2017 through 2020, he toiled in the defensive line rotation, with a little over 33 percent of snaps under new Defensive coordinator Wade Phillips. He missed the whole 2018 run to the Super Bowl with a knee injury.
His 10 starts this season are the highest of his career. A lot that may be because the Chargers have lost six defensive linemen to the Injured Reserve List and waived first round draft pick Jerry Tillery, but Fox has worked hard on improving his game. Since joining the league, he’s participated in the off-season Von Miller Pass Rush Summit multiple times.
Linebacker Troy Reeder (2019-2021)
Has played in all 15 games, predominantly on special teams. Reeder has logged only 34 defensive snaps, while getting almost 300 on ST. He has a modest 10 tackles without registering a sack or tackle for loss and has forced one fumble.
Reeder joined the Rams as an undrafted free agent in 2019 out of Delaware. Out of high school, he originally was committed to play lacrosse for North Carolina, but switched to football and signed with Penn State. After two seasons, he left the Nittany Lions for Delaware.
In his three season’s in L.A., Reeder had 25 starts, accumulated 230 tackles, 11 for loss, and five sacks. Missed tackles were his Achilles heel, with over 10 percent being whiffs.
Kicker Cameron Dicker- (2022 preseason)
Had a cup of coffee with the Rams in the summer of 2022. He was signed out of Texas as an undrafted free agent and released in mid-training camp, spent a few days with the Baltimore Ravens before being released and landed with Philadelphia Eagles in October. He saw action in one game as an Eagle and kicked two field goals, one the game winner, but was released three weeks later without further action. The Chargers signed him to their practice squad and because of injuries, was pressed into service.
As a Bolt, he has converted 16 of 17 field goals and all 16 extra points attempted. 30 of his 38 kickoffs have been touchbacks. Strangely enough, Dicker has won the NFL Special Teams Player of the Week Award twice for his game-winning kicks in Weeks 5 (as an Eagle) and 9 (as a Charger). He is the only rookie to win the award with two different teams.
Any ex-Chargers playing for the Rams?
After earning a starting role for the Bolts in 2021, current Rams guard Oday Aboushi tore a knee up in Week 5 and was lost for the year. They decided not to re-up him after the season. The Rams signed Aboushi off the street back in September when the avalanche of offensive line injuries began. He has garnered four starts and has seen action in 13 games.