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Newest Rams addition also the oldest, heaviest

7/29/2009

Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando

Newly signed defensive tackle Hollis Thomas becomes the oldest player on the Rams' roster. At 335 pounds, he also carries the highest listed weight among Rams players.

The Rams have parted with a long list of older players this offseason. Thomas projects as a situational run-stuffer. The Scouts Inc. report on Thomas described him this way, in part:

Thomas is primarily a run-stopper who often comes off the field in passing situations. He doesn't have a lot of speed and is missing burst and athleticism as a pass-rusher. As a run defender he is built low and does a good job of playing with leverage. Has good lower-body strength to play stout, with good awareness to locate and make plays in a short area. Shows good reactions and can stack it up quickly, showing good hand use and pad level. When taking on double-teams he will get narrow with his shoulders and try to split the mesh.

Provides a small target for combo blocks but will start to lose ground when attacked low. Has some success penetrating off the ball when attempting a quick swim move. Is missing overall quickness to run down [plays] or make tackles in space once he sheds or clears.

Overall, Thomas has limited pass-rush variety but is tough and physical against the run, playing low and using veteran recognition skills.

Thomas was with the Eagles when Rams coach Steve Spagnuolo was there. He presumably has familiarity with the defensive system Spagnuolo is implementing in St. Louis.

Pending additional moves, the Rams' defensive tackles now include: Thomas, Darell Scott, Clifton Ryan, Antwon Burton, Willie Williams, Adam Carriker and Gary Gibson.