On Friday, the Los Angeles Rams announced that they had come to terms and signed three more rookies, Zach Evans, Tre’Vius Hodges-Tomlinson, and Ochaun Mathis. This leaves L.A. with two more rookies left to get under the tent, third round picks Kobie Turner and Byron Young.
Once all rookies are signed, and that should happen next week, the Rams will have 86 players under contract. As training camp looms, L.A. should have around $8 million in cap space. The traditional number of players entering camp is 90, so more additions may well be in the offing.
Running back Zach Evans
There will be a lot of eyes on Evans in camp. Some pundits have bandied his name about on All-Rookie teams. He has natural running ability and is very athletic with a 8.74 RAS. In early May, Evan Craig profiled Evans and touched on his talent and a controversial past. Drafted out Ole Miss at #215 of Round 6, with development on the field and maturity off, he has a nice ceiling.
Cornerback Tre’Vius Hodges-Tomlinson
Hodges-Tomlinson was the 2022 Jim Thorpe Award winner as the best defensive back in the FBS college ranks. Because of his size, his draft status fell to #182 of Round 6. His on-field production at TCU was stellar and on May 5, Cliff Jackson opined on THT as the steal of the Rams draft class.
Edge Ochaun Mathis
Taken at #189 of Round 6 out of Nebraska. Mathis is a raw player who’s blessed with physical gifts. Back on May 6, I profiled Mathis’ acquisition. At the NFL Combine, He measured in at 6’ 5, carried 250 lbs. with 10 3/4” hands and 35 1/4” arms, all stellar numbers. He rates a 8.33 RAS grade.
Defensive tackle Kobie Turner
When the Rams decided to take the “remodel” road, they burnt their bridge when it came to the defensive line. Four of five starters across the front line were cast off. Turner, drafted at #89 of Round 3, is in competition with a group of undrafted free agents and later round draft picks. Daniel Stone profiled him back on May 11.
Edge Byron Young
Can Young make an immediate impact? Cliff Jackson made the case in a June 3 article. Athletic freak with a 9.22 RAS, only nicked down by his height and weight. But is he small? All-Pro Von Miller is of similar size. Has SEC pedigree (Tennessee) and was selected at #77 of Round 3. Steven Ridings covered young’s long road to the NFL back on May 6.
Are they locks to make the team?
Opinions may vary as to which rookies will or won’t make the team, but this group has all been touted to have the talent to earn a spot on the rams opening roster. Evans may well be RB#4 right now, but unless he totally falls flat, should move up the depth chart as he takes to the pro game. The other candidates, all on the defensive side of the ball, face an open competition in pursuit of positions on a defense barren of experience. Hodges-Tomlinson, Young, Turner, and Mathis can all win a role with a standout camp.
One number in their favor is 80, that’s the percentage of rookies that make the opening roster during the Sean McVay era.