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Friday, July 29, 2011
Rams official list of undrafted rookies

By Mike Sando

It's been a tough week for St. Louis Rams fans hoping their team would use free agency to aggressively target needs.

The Rams did reach an agreement with Philadelphia Eagles safety Quintin Mikell, but needs at guard, defensive tackle, linebacker and running back remain unaddressed in the veteran market. Those clamoring for a big-play receiver remain in clamoring mode.

It's early. Lots of bad money gets spent early in free agency. I realize that doesn't matter to fans seeking action. But it's true.

The veteran signing period does not even open officially until 6 p.m. ET. In the meantime, the Rams have released a list of 24 undrafted rookie free agents signed to contracts. They picked up six offensive linemen, five defensive linemen and five defensive backs. The one halfback on the list, Eddie Wide, ran the 40-yard dash in 4.47 seconds coming out of Utah. NFL Draft Scout projected him as a late-round pick with rising stock.

The new labor agreement calls for all undrafted rookies to sign three-year contracts, a perk for NFL teams. Most undrafted rookies will not earn roster spots. Teams will release them. A few will hang around and some will flourish unexpectedly. Those outperforming expectations will find themselves under contract for an extended period, forcing them to renegotiate on teams' terms, if they are able to renegotiate at all.