The Los Angeles Rams selected 14 rookies throughout the NFL Draft. However, that didn’t end their new rookies additions to the roster. After the draft, the Rams then added 24 undrafted free agents to the roster.
Unlike past years, there will be a lot of opportunity for the incoming undrafted free agent class. The Rams have a lot of young players which means there will be competition for depth spots all over the roster.
Here are the Rams’ undrafted free agents ranked based on their likelihood to make the roster.
1. K Christopher Dunn, NC State
Jake Moody was considered the best kicker entering the draft. However, the Rams may have found good value with Dunn as an undrafted free agent. Dunn is consistent as he never missed an extra-point at NC State. He went 28-for-29 last year and was a perfect 2-for-2 from 50+ yards. He’ll be the favorite to be the Rams kicker in 2023.
2. LS Alex Ward, UCF
The top two undrafted free agents with the best chances of making the roster are specialists. That should come as no surprise. Following the draft, the Rams still didn’t have a kicker or long-snapper on the roster. The Rams could bring in some competition for Ward, but right now, he’s the favorite.
3. RB Tiyon Evans, Louisville
In his draft report on Tiyon Evans, The Athletic’s Dane Brugler said,
“He has quick-read vision to make decisive cuts but needs to introduce more patience into his run diet...Overall, Evans has the size, quickness and contact balance that gives him a shot in the NFL, but he will need to prove he can be reliable in all facets to secure a roster spot.”
Last season, Evans had 164 carries for 1,050 yards and 12 touchdowns. At 5’9, 225-pounds, Evans is pure muscle and is the physical running back that the Rams are missing in the running back room. He needs to improve in pass protection, but he adds an element that the Rams don’t have and that gives him a good chance on the final roster.
4. LB Kelechi Anyalebechi, Incarnate Word
The first thing that sticks out with Anyalebechi is his speed. His 4.6 second 40-yard dash is very quick for the linebacker position. He also posted a good vertical at 38-inches. Anyalebechi was the heart of the Incarnate Word defense as he was constantly around the ball. Last season he recorded a school record 130 tackles. In the past two years he forced four fumbles, had 12 pass breakups with four interceptions, and recorded 4.5 sacks. There will be a lot of opportunity at the linebacker position behind Ernest Jones and Anyalebechi could make an impact.
5. S Quindell Johnson, Memphis
According to Brugler from The Athletic,
“Johnson anticipates well in coverage to drive on throws. He leverages well in the run game and creates knockback at contact, but his body tightness creates rigid movements and unbalanced tackle attempts, allowing ball carriers to get free (see 2022 Mississippi State tape). Overall, Johnson has straight-line tendencies as an athlete, but he is instinctive, long and physical enough to make plays in the run and pass games and on special teams.”
If Johnson can make an impact on special teams, that alone will give him a good chance at making the final roster. He lacks versatility, but is a tackling machine. Johnson finished his career with 320 tackles, including 104 in 2021, a year in which he also had 12 passes defended.
6. CB Jordan Jones, Rhode Island
About Jordan Jones, Lance Zierlien of NFL.com wrote,
“Jones is a ball-hawking cornerback with the short-area quickness to be a factor in zone coverage. While he can press and play forms of man coverage, he’s much more effective in zone, where he allows his instincts to guide him. Jones’ ball skills come naturally and should follow him to the next level provided he can handle the step up in competition and finds a quality scheme fit.”
The Rams will like Jones’ ball-hawking ability as he had eight interceptions and 20 pass breakups over the last two years. There’s opportunity if the Rams keep five or six cornerbacks on the roster. Jones will have a good chance to claim one of those spots, but should land on the practice squad.
7. EDGE Matthew Jester, Princeton
Jester is a fun player. He played on the edge at Princeton and had an interception this past season on a conversion attempt that he returned for a touchdown. Jester fits the Rams profile at edge rusher as he’s extremely athletic and showed good explosiveness in his athletic testing. However, what makes him really intriguing is that he worked out as an edge rusher and fullback at his Pro Day. He’s extremely athletic and will be an interesting player for the Rams to develop.
8. CB Timarcus Davis, Arizona State
At 5’11, 180-pounds, Davis is a smaller cornerback, but fits the size profile that the Rams have typically targeted. He doesn’t have the speed that they typically look for, but he’s a competitive player and will have an opportunity to make the roster behind the top-4 cornerbacks.
9. S Tanner Ingle, NC State
Out of the undrafted free agent defensive backs, Ingle may have the best chance to land on the roster. He’s physical, is a good tackler, and can line up almost anywhere in the secondary. That versatility is valuable to have as depth. He can be too aggressive at times and there are injury concerns. However, if he can stay healthy and develop, there is a very good player here. Having the undrafted chip on his shoulder will only help.
10. S Rashad Torrence III, Florida
About Torrence, Brugler said,
“A loose mover with functional vision to impact the game as both a run defender and cover man. Though he sees the action well to read and react, he doesn’t always have the speed to get there in time, leaving production on the field. Overall, Torrence checks the defensive back boxes for instincts and fluidity, but the lack of explosiveness shows in the plays he struggles to make, and his tackling must improve. He is a potential end-of-the-roster defensive back in the NFL.”
The Rams do have a need at safety. However, it’s hard to see them keeping more than 4-5 guys. That leaves the opportunity for someone to break through pretty minimal. Torrence will have that opportunity as he is talented. Still, he’s likely better fit for the practice squad.
11. K Tanner Brown, Oklahoma State
Like Dunn, Brown was perfect on extra-points over the last two seasons and went 22-for-23 on field goals in 2022. Dunn will be the favorite to win the kicking competition, but with no favorite kicker on the roster, Brown could come out on top.
12. WR Sam James, West Virginia
It’s going to be an uphill battle for any wide receiver to make the roster and Sam James is no exception. The Rams have depth at wide receiver. They drafted Puka Nacua and then Lance McCutcheon will be looking to build on last year. Where James does stand out is on special teams. He has experience returning kicks which will boost his chances outside of his good route-running and body control. There’s a good chance James makes a name for himself in the preseason and lands on the practice squad.
13. WR Xavier Smith, Florida A&M
Zierlein describes Smith as,
“A Slender speedster with the potential to be used as a gadget option and return man. Smith has the burst and vision to handle jet sweep looks. Also, he has the athleticism and separation potential to become a better route runner. Finishing contested catches could be an issue and he might not offer as much deep-throw value as expected due to average ball skills. Whether he is drafted or not, Smith’s return ability and speed will gain him entry into a camp and give him a chance to find a home on a roster.”
Smith’s return ability will certainly help him when it comes to a roster spot. If he can develop as a route-runner, he certainly could steal the final wide receiver spot. Still, he’ll likely be competing with other UDFAs for a spot on the practice squad.
14. S/LB Jaiden Woodbey, Florida State
Zierlein wrote about Woodbey,
“Woodbey has good short-area quickness and play strength, but he lacks the instincts and burst to make plays that stand out. His speed testing was disappointing, but it appears to match what is on tape at times. He needs to prove he can play fast and will need to star on special teams to have a shot.”
The Rams signed three other safeties and three other linebackers as undrafted free agents. It’s going to be an uphill battle for Woodbey and making an impact on special teams is going to be key. He has good size, but as Zierlein wrote, his speed is disappointing.
15. S Collin Duncan, Mississippi State
There will be a lot of opportunity for these undrafted free agents and safety is no different. The Rams do have Russ Yeast, Jordan Fuller, Quentin Lake, and Jason Taylor II. However, behind them, it will be an open competition. It all depends on whether or not the Rams keep more than four safeties. Duncan showed good explosiveness in his athletic testing and his 81.4 PFF grade in coverage ranked 30th among college safeties last season.
16. LB Ryan Smenda, Jr., Wake Forest
Smenda is a good run-defender with a high-motor. He has all the intangibles that you look for in a football player. Unfortunately, he has limited upside and with the other players competing at the position, he may have a tough time making the final roster.
17. CB Cameron McCutcheon, Western Carolina
The Rams did well with an undrafted free agent with the last name McCutcheon last year. Cameron McCutcheon will be looking for the same fate as Lance. McCutcheon brings 6’3 size and 200-pounds which the Rams don’t currently have. He’ll have an uphill battle given the competition at the cornerback spot, but McCutcheon shouldn’t be ruled out.
18. TE Christian Sims, Bowling Green
Zierein from NFL.com describes Sims as,
“An undersized tight end who will give it a go as a blocker but is not strong enough or technically sound enough to handle in-line or lead-blocking duties. He’s a talented athlete who has the acceleration to uncover versus man coverage, the speed to threaten the over the top of linebackers and the talent to create after the catch. The lack of a clean positional fit limits his opportunities, but there is clearly talent to mold.”
Sims’ chances of making the roster depends on how many the Rams decide to keep. After drafting Davis Allen, that leaves them with Tyler Higbee, Brycen Hopkins, Hunter Long, and Allen. It seems unlikely that they would keep a fifth. However, Sims should have a good chance of seeing the practice squad if he can impress.
19. LB DeAndre Square, Kentucky
Square doesn’t have great size as he’s just 6’0, 226-pounds. However, the Rams do like linebackers with a safety background and players who can cover. Square plays well in space and should bring some value on special teams. Will that be enough to make the roster?
20. iOL Sean Maginn, Wake Forest
After drafting Steve Avila, any interior offensive lineman is going to have a hard time making the roster. Maginn may be competing for a practice squad spot. If the Rams keep nine offensive linemen, those nine are pretty solidly in place unless someone really stands out in training camp and the preseason.
21. CB Tyon Davis, Tulsa
There will be a lot of competition at cornerback and Davis could have more of an uphill climb. He was credited with eight pass breakups last season. PFF gave him a 73.4 grade in coverage in 2022 as he gave up 27 receptions for 361 yards.
22. iOL Mike McAllister, Youngstown State
McAllister was a three-year starter at Youngstown State and was a starter over the final 28 games. In 2022, he was named second-team All-Missouri Valley Football Conference. Similar to Maginn, winning a spot on the offensive line is going to be difficult given the players already in place.e
23. WR Tyler Hudson, Louisville
It’s going to be very difficult for Hudson to make the roster. Not only is he not a good athlete, the Rams have some depth at wide receiver. His best shot will be to make an impression and land on the practice squad.
24. QB Dresser Winn, Tennessee-Martin
The Rams signed Brett Rypien on Wednesday, meaning that Winn is likely just a camp arm. Winn may not make it to the preseason on the roster.