The Los Angeles Rams wrapped up their offseason program on Thursday and open training camp on July 31 at the University of California-Irvine in Irvine, California. Here's a 53-man roster projection:
Foles was absent for the majority of the offseason program and even coach Jeff Fisher has said that Foles doesn't expect to be on the roster when the season starts. The only question is how and when the sides part ways.
Projecting what will become of Tre Mason is difficult at this stage as he still has a legal process that must play out after his offseason arrest. Even if he returns, it's possible he could be facing a suspension, which would still make this the most likely quartet.
The Rams haven't always kept this many tight ends but they are already high on Higbee's potential as a pass-catcher and view Hemingway as a possible special teams contributor in addition to his upside so they could go a little heavy here.
Speaking of keeping extra players at a position, this is the spot the Rams have regularly gone with more than the league average and I expect them to do so again. If they can develop someone like Wichmann as a reliable backup center, it's possible he and Rhaney could battle for one spot. For now, we'll project both to stay.
The Rams are high on their undrafted rookie class at this position and someone like Nelson Spruce, Paul McRoberts, Duke Williams or Marquez North could easily steal a roster spot but until we see one of them emerge with the pads on, we'll go with the draft picks and incumbents.
The injury to defensive tackle Louis Trinca-Pasat means there's probably not going to be much drama here so long as Easley proves healthy and capable inside. Keeping a ninth defensive lineman has been common practice for the Rams under Fisher but it's no sure thing they'll do it again. If that's the case, Longacre could get bumped for another linebacker or safety.
The Rams have an intriguing group of undrafted free agents here plus drafted rookie Josh Forrest, but to make room for a sixth wideout and 10th offensive lineman, they'll have to go a little light somewhere and they've done so at linebacker in the past.
Not keeping an undrafted safety like Brian Randolph was one of the toughest decisions and when we do this again during training camp, that could change. McDonald's uncertain legal status and possible punishment from the league could also alter how this looks on opening day.
Despite insistences to the contrary, the Rams didn't seem to bring in true competition for Zuerlein, though we still have to see whether undrafted rookie Taylor Bertolet gets a real shot to push for his job. Still, the early hunch here is that Zuerlein wins out. Safe to say the best punter in the league isn't going anywhere. McQuaide doesn't get much attention for his consistency and that's exactly what you want from a long snapper.