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Wednesday, July 23, 2014
Rams tweak roster before camp

By Nick Wagoner

EARTH CITY, Mo. -- The St. Louis Rams don't officially begin training camp until Friday, but they took care of a little housekeeping before the veterans join the rookies and they get down to business.

In a flurry of moves Tuesday evening into Wednesday, the Rams released four players, signed four more and put two players on the non-football injury list. All the moves dealt with players at the bottom of the roster.

The Rams released wide receiver Diontae Spencer, linebacker Tavarius Wilson, linebacker Caleb McSurdy and offensive lineman Abasi Salimu. All four were rookie free agents signed after the draft in May. They had all spent organized team activities and the offseason program in St. Louis.

To fill the vacated roster spots, the Rams signed offensive tackles R.J. Dill and D.J. Morrell and linebackers Pat Schiller and Lawrence Wilson. That quartet also doesn't come with any noteworthy NFL experience, as none have played in a regular-season NFL game.

Schiller, who played his college football at Northern Illinois, actually comes with a bit of an interesting story. His journey to the NFL was chronicled by the New York Times in 2012.

Elsewhere, the Rams added rookie defensive tackle Ethan Westbrooks and safety Christian Bryant to the non-football injury list. Bryant has continued rehab from a foot/ankle injury since the Rams drafted him. Coach Jeff Fisher said at the end of the offseason program there was a good chance Bryant would not be available to open camp. Westbrooks' injury is unknown.

Bryant and Westbrooks still count toward the 90-man roster, and the Rams can activate them at any time once they've been medically cleared by a doctor.

The non-football injury list functions similarly to the physically unable to perform list but designates players differently. The NFI list is for players who either suffered an injury away from football or, for rookies, players who suffered injuries playing football in college or a league other than the NFL.