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What do Rams plan to do with Tutu Atwell in 2022?

Atwell played in only eight games before shoulder injury prematurely ended his rookie season

NFL: OCT 31 Rams at Texans Photo by Jordon Kelly/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

It’s not often a player wins a Super Bowl in their rookie season, but first-year wide receiver Tutu Atwell had a year he’d probably like to forget.

After being drafted with the 57th overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, Atwell played in eight games, starting none before suffering a season-ending shoulder injury against the Houston Texans in October. During his rookie campaign, Tutu had zero catches and played a mere 10 offensive snaps all season. Atwell was exclusively limited to special teams action, returning 10 punts for 54 yards and five kickoffs for 87 yards.

Not great for a first-year player seemingly on the way to losing his already loose grip on the receiver position. About the only thing that was consistent about Atwell’s rookie campaign was being the target of ridicule from the LA fanbase.

Not to mention some fans were bitter over who the Rams could’ve taken with the pick instead:

Time will tell if Atwell does indeed become the worst pick of 2021 draft, but it isn’t looking good thus far for the Louisville product. Tutu was a fourth or fifth receiver at best going into the season and not much might change as the team heads into 2022. As for pass catchers, Los Angeles will boast some record-setter named Cooper Kupp, a returning Robert Woods, Van Jefferson and possibly OBJ should he be resigned and healthy.

In his limited sample size, Atwell never impressed on special teams and his role there will likely be replaced by Brandon Powell. Against the Minnesota Vikings, Powell scored on a 61-yard punt return which secured a victory and a playoff berth for the Rams. He was named NFC Special Teams Player of the Week for his efforts.

Given that Tutu has three years left on his current deal, it’s unlikely LA cuts him this offseason. The front office might keep him around for insurance in case a role of some sort is indeed carved out for him. Perhaps the coaching staff will only give him this season to prove that he deserves a roster spot. Atwell had an unfortunate rookie year but should he disappoint once more in whatever opportunities he’s granted, don’t expect him hanging around past ‘22.