The final game not featuring any rams starter has finally come to an end. The Los Angeles Rams beat the Houston Texans 22-10 on Thursday night, improving their preseason record to 2-2. This game was a farewell to some of our preseason favorites. The players that weren’t dressed for play on the sideline like Mike Thomas and JoJo Natson will likely be making the final roster, which leaves players like Nsimba Webster looking in from the outside. Although some roster decisions were made prior to the game versus the Texans, some players showed that they are still fighting hard for a spot on LA’s favorite team. This is stock up, stock down for the Rams’ preseason finale versus the Houston Texans.
John Wolford, Quarterback
John Wolford has made the decision for the third-string quarterback spot an easy one to make. His two touchdown passes along with some great throws on the run against the Texans only solidified his spot. Wolford is sometimes errant with his throws, yes, but let us not forget that just a few months ago he was playing in the AAF. The man was praying on an NFL career and here he is making the most of it. I’m not saying he is better than Blake Bortles, but the Rams are showing some growth in keeping a guy like Wolford around instead of guys like Sean Mannion or Brandon Allen if they do decide to keep him. Praise be you, John Wolford, I’m hoping you make the 53.
Ogbonnia Okoronkwo, EDGE
The was Ogbonnia Okoronkwo has played throughout this preseason has been no surprise. The real shock is that he has been able to stay on the field. *Knocks on a giant slab of wood.* The player that Los Angeles Rams fans were hyping up when he was drafted was slowly starting to be doubted, but in the preseason he put all of that to rest. With two sacks, a couple holds drawn, and impact all over the backfield against the Texans on Thursday night, Okoronkwo has solidified his spot on this Rams roster and has given me a personal breath of fresh air at the EDGE spot.
Dakota Allen, Inside Linebacker
Dakota Allen is another player who came into his chance with the Rams with a ton of question marks. Coming out of Last Chance U, Allen was a 7th round pick and was a longshot to have an impact on a final Rams roster in the future. This sentiment changed this summer. The gaping hole at the inside linebacker position is primed for the taking, and behind Bryce Hager, there are so many snaps to be taken. Against the Texans, Allen made his force felt again. Every play you could see his nameplate near the ball, and that shows something. Allen has turned a longshot into a reality through his instinctive style of play, let’s see if it carries over.
Justin Davis, Running Back
The forgotten name in the Los Angeles Rams’ running backs room is Justin Davis. Davis made the most of his opportunity on Thursday night, exploding for breakaway runs, a touchdown, and a two-point conversion. Realistically, Davis isn’t making this Rams roster, but having his make it past waivers and onto the practice squad would be a godsend for the Rams. Davis has talent, and the only chance he really had to show it was against the Texans.
Troy Reeder, Linebacker
Putting Troy Reeder here is a no brainer for me. Even with a lack of depth within the linebacking core, Reeder hasn’t played enough to deserve a spot. In the preseason as a whole, Reeder needed improvement, and after a guy like Ogbo Okoronkwo comes in and dominates, Reeder got left in the dust. If he makes it past waivers, I could see Reeder making a case for the practice squad because of the thin linebacking core but other than that, he shouldn’t be a full-time Ram.
David Long Jr. Cornerback
The Rams played around with David Long this preseason. Moving Long around the secondary was a test of his skillset early into his career: he struggled. He has some amazing potential, which is great for the Rams because they have real depth at the cornerback position. David Long is a lock to make this roster, of course, but his struggles against the Texans (two contested catches against him, etc.) a year of learning from two of the best corners in the game will be a huge step in the right direction for him. The Rams could be asking a lot of Long by next year.
Jamil Demby, Interior Offensive Line
Jamil Demby, whew boy. He is making this roster, but his struggles haven’t been encouraging at all. Similarly to David Long, Demby has moved around to both guard spots and the center spot along the offensive line. At center especially, Demby was atrocious. I’ve talked about Demby too much over the past month to go in-depth on his struggles throughout the preseason, but offensive line coach Aaron Kromer has his work cut out for him this year with Demby.
Brandon Allen, Quarterback
Finally. Finally, Brandon Allen looks to be the odd man out in the quarterback’s room. John Wolford is too athletic and diverse to be forgotten about and cut, Bortles is a lock, and Jared Goff is starting of course. Allen threw two interceptions and was errant against the Texans, and it should be his last go-around. Allen will rack up the yards, but they will be mostly garbage yards. The Rams even brought him in TWICE to give him a second chance in the Texans game. You could just see the dropoff. That should be his last game as a Los Angeles Ram.
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