Sunday, June 1, 2014
Rams post-draft position outlook: ST's
By Nick Wagoner
EARTH CITY, Mo. -- With the NFL draft and free agency complete, the St. Louis Rams 53-man roster will likely come mostly from the players already on the team.
With organized team activities (OTAs) a couple days away, we take a look at where each position stands heading into next week. The series concludes today by examining the specialists.
Who returns: K Greg Zuerlein, P Johnny Hekker, LS Jake McQuaide
Who is new: P Bobby Cowan, LS Jorgen Hus
Who is gone: None
Projected starters: Zuerlein, Hekker, McQuaide
Pending competition: Barring something shocking or unforeseen such as an injury, there really isn't much to see here. It's common practice for teams to bring in additional camp legs at kicker and/or punter and an additional long snapper who can snap for those camp legs. Zuerlein, Hekker and McQuaide form one of the league's best young special teams trio. There's no reason to believe that group will be altered anytime soon.
Outlook: Hekker leads the charge here after a record-setting 2013 season in which he went to the Pro Bowl and earned first-team All Pro honors. He's only entering his third season but the Rams will probably make an effort to tie him up with a long-term contract sometime in the near future. He's eligible for restricted free agency after the season and the Rams could tie him up before reaching that point as they did with McQuaide last season. Zuerlein is also entering his third season and is coming off a strong 2013 season. Zuerlein was more consistent last year and it didn't hurt that the Rams didn't ask as much of him as they did in 2012 when it comes to attempts beyond 50 yards. He did have a couple of key misses in home games against Seattle and Tennessee but those were his only misses for the season. He's signed through 2015. McQuaide has been flawless in his three seasons and earned an extension before last season. He's signed through 2017. With this threesome in place, the Rams appear set with specialists for the foreseeable future.