Kyren Williams

Rams Activate Three From Injured Lists, Waive RB Malcolm Brown

The Rams remain one of the most active teams in the league with their activations from the injured lists, continuing that trend today with two activations from injured reserve and one from the physically unable to perform list. After the three activations, the team will have two remaining, the second lowest in the league after only their division rivals in San Francisco. In order to free up some space on the roster, Los Angeles waived veteran running back Malcolm Brown.

The biggest return for the Rams is interior offensive lineman Coleman Shelton, who started four games for the Rams before being placed on IR. Coleman initially started at right guard for Los Angeles before moving to center to help replace an injured Brian Allen. Alaric Jackson was filling in for Coleman until being asked to cover the left tackle spot left vacant when Joseph Noteboom was placed on IR. Since then, some spot starts from Oday Aboushi and Chandler Brewer have contributed to an extremely injured offensive line.

The other two activations were rookie running back Kyren Williams from IR and rookie safety Quentin Lake from the PUP list. Williams was a fifth-round draft pick out of Notre Dame and is expected to have enough of an impact as a rookie that the team felt comfortable letting go of Brown. The shorter, stocky back should provide a complimentary skillset alongside Darrell Henderson and Cam Akers. Lake, a sixth-round pick out of nearby UCLA, should provide some key depth behind Nick Scott and Taylor Rapp at safety with Jordan Fuller still on IR.

Brown’s return to Los Angeles, after a one-year stay in Miami, was fairly short-lived and unproductive. In five games this year, Brown has only touched the ball 16 times for 57 total scrimmage yards, despite all the drama keeping Akers off the field. It appears that, after seven of eight years with the team, the Rams have seen enough of what Brown can provide in their running backs room and will allow the 29-year-old to test the waiver wire.

Lastly, in anticipation of their matchup with the Cardinals this weekend, the team has elevated tight end Jared Pinkney from the practice squad. The former Vanderbilt tight end made his Rams debut last week, playing solely on special teams.

Rams To Activate RB Kyren Williams From IR

Injuries and the Cam Akers drama have produced an unstable Rams rushing attack this season. The defending Super Bowl champions enter Week 10 ranked 31st on the ground.

The team held onto Akers at the trade deadline and used him against the Buccaneers. Another option will be available for the reeling Rams on Sunday. Sean McVay said the team will activate Kyren Williams from IR. Williams has been out since Week 1 due to a high ankle sprain sustained during limited duty in Week 1. Williams will be the Rams’ fourth injury activation this season.

A fifth-round pick out of Notre Dame, Williams has one NFL play on his resume. That special teams rep led to a half-season’s worth of injury-induced absences. But the Rams will get a look at the two-time Fighting Irish 1,000-yard rusher against the Cardinals. It remains to be seen if Williams will carve out a meaningful role in Los Angeles’ backfield, but given the team’s struggles, it would surprise if the 5-foot-9 rusher did not receive an extended look during this season’s second half.

Williams combined to score 31 touchdowns during his sophomore and junior years in South Bend. He topped 300 receiving yards in each of those campaigns. But injuries have been a problem for the rookie; Week 10 will be the end of an extensive journey. Williams began training camp on the Rams’ active/PUP list due to a broken foot.

Akers has not regained the form he displayed as a rookie; the July 2021 Achilles tear has become an unfortunate line of demarcation for the former second-round pick’s career. Following what is believed to be a football-related dispute, the Rams dangled Akers in deals — including offers for Christian McCaffrey and Brian Burns. No team bit. Akers, who is signed through 2023, totaled five carries for three yards last week in Tampa.

Darrell Henderson, who is playing on an expiring contract, leads the Rams with 253 rushing yards (4.1 per carry). But the team has tried veteran Malcolm Brown and UDFA Ronnie Rivers at points as well. Injuries at four of L.A.’s five starting offensive line positions have certainly impacted the team’s ability to sustain a ground game as well. The Rams will at least have their full stable of running backs available this week.

Minor NFL Transactions: 9/13/22

Here are Tuesday’s minor moves:

Atlanta Falcons

Baltimore Ravens

Carolina Panthers

Cleveland Browns

Indianapolis Colts

Kansas City Chiefs

Los Angeles Chargers

Los Angeles Rams

New England Patriots

Philadelphia Eagles

San Francisco 49ers

Tennessee Titans

Hand suffered a torn quad in the Titans’ opener, according to Tom Pelissero of NFL.com (on Twitter). He is undergoing surgery and is expected to miss the rest of the season. A former fourth-round Lions draftee back in 2018, Hand has been with the Titans since last year. He played two defensive snaps Sunday.

Montgomery had battled a knee injury during the run-up to the regular season, but the veteran passing-down back played in the Patriots’ Week 1 contest. Montgomery caught three passes for 15 yards in New England’s loss. The Pats signed Humphrey, a former Saints wideout, midway through the offseason.

Rams RB Kyren Williams Suffers High Ankle Sprain

The Rams lost their first season opener of the Sean McVay era last night, and the team has received more unwanted news today. Rookie running back Kyren Williams suffered a high ankle sprain during the first quarter of the team’s loss to Buffalo, and could miss up to six weeks (Twitter link via ESPN’s Field Yates). 

The fifth-rounder had already faced injury problems before last night. Williams underwent foot surgery this offseason which cost him time during training camp. He was expected to operate as the team’s No. 3 back behind Cam Akers and Darrell Henderson.

That pair combined for just 47 yards on the ground yesterday, however, in their first game action after an offseason which included injury concerns of their own. Akers has become the subject of scrutiny after an underwhelming return from last year’s Achilles tear, the continuation of which could have opened the door to more opportunities for Williams.

The Notre Dame alum saw just four carries as a freshman, but was highly productive in the two proceeding campaigns. He topped 1,000 rushing yards in 2020 and 2021, adding 672 yards in the passing game across those two seasons. Barring a return to form from Akers and Henderson, that receiving ability will be missed by the defending champions.

Jourdan Rodrigue of The Athletic tweets that Williams will undergo surgery today. His rehab process (which she pegs at 6-8 weeks) will be worth watching as the Rams look to get back on track without him.

Minor NFL Transactions: 8/8/22

Today’s minor moves:

Atlanta Falcons

  • Waived/injured: DT Bryce Rodgers

Carolina Panthers

Jacksonville Jaguars

Kansas City Chiefs

Los Angeles Chargers

Los Angeles Rams

New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

New York Jets

Pittsburgh Steelers

Washington Commanders

  • Signed: WR Matt Cole
  • Reverted to IR: WR Jequez Ezzard

Rams Make Adjustments To Original PUP Assignments

JULY 24: After originally announcing some PUP moves on their website Friday night, the Rams have made a couple of adjustments to the list before it becomes final on Tuesday.

Head coach Sean McVay informed reporters that the team “decided to pivot and not place (cornerback) Jalen Ramsey on the PUP list,” according to ESPN’s Sarah Barshop. McVay conveyed that the team doctors had been able to clear Ramsey to participate in “above the neck” drills in camp. Ramsey would not have been allowed to work in such drills if he were placed on PUP.

Linebacker Travin Howard is also not going to be placed on the PUP list, but, unfortunately, will still be placed on the team’s non-football injury list, according to Josh Alper of NBC Sports. The change in placement is due to the disclosure of information that Howard’s injury occurred in workouts leading up to camp. Howard will see a core muscle specialist in Philadelphia this week for surgery with hopes of being ready by the start of the regular season.

Lastly, the Rams added one more player to the PUP list in addition to Lake and Williams (who were originally reported below). Wide receiver Warren Jackson will join the two as physically unable to perform, according to Aaron Wilson of Pro Football Network.

JULY 23: The Rams have placed four players on the physically unable to perform list. According to the team’s website, defensive back Jalen Ramsey, linebacker Travin Howard, safety Quentin Lake, and running back Kyren Williams were all placed on PUP.

Ramsey played all of last season with tears in both shoulders, leading to an offseason operation. It’s only been a month since the defensive back decided to go under the knife, so he was always expected to be limited for the early parts of training camp. As head coach Sean McVay told reporters, the team is mostly focused on having Ramsey on the field for the start of the regular season.

“The thing with Jalen is, you want to see what the timetable is, because there are some parameters where you lose the ability to do certain things you might want to, but that’s definitely going to be a topic [Vice President, Sports Medicine and Performance Reggie Scott and I] will discuss this afternoon,” McVay said (via the team’s website). “But he’s doing good. He’s been attacking the rehab the right way. He’s feeling good. When we did do that surgery on him, obviously most importantly was how he felt about it, but then with the goal in mind of, alright, attack the rehab the right way, and most importantly, be ready for Sept. 8, ready to go. So we’ll be smart about that progress for him.”

Ramsey had another incredible season in 2021, culminating in him earning a Super Bowl ring. He finished the regular season with 77 tackles, 16 passes defended, and four interceptions in 16 games, with Pro Football Focus grading him as the top CB in the NFL. The performance also earned him his fifth Pro Bowl nod and third first-team All-Pro recognition. Ramsey started each of the Rams four playoff contests, collecting another 13 tackles.

Howard, who has mostly played a special teams role since joining the Rams, pulled his groin was training on his own. Williams, a rookie fifth-round pick, is still recovering from a broken foot suffered during offseason programs, but he’s expected to return to the field before the end of training camp. It’s uncertain what injury Lake is dealing with. The UCLA product was a sixth-round pick in this year’s draft.

Latest On Cam Akers, Rams Offense

Cam Akers was clearly limited when he returned from a full Achilles tear to join the Rams for their Super Bowl run. Following a rookie campaign where he collected 748 yards from scrimmage on 156 touches (4.8 yards per touch), Akers was limited to 248 yards from scrimmage on 75 postseason touches (3.3 yards per touch). Fortunately, the running back told Jourdan Rodrigue of The Athletic that he’s 100 percent healthy heading into training camp, and he’s focused on maintaining his health throughout the upcoming season.

“(I’m) focusing on building my armor up as strong as it can be, but really locking in on the mental side, as well,” Akers said during spring practices.

New Rams running backs coach Ra’Shaad Samples might not necessarily have the luxury of easing Akers back into action. As Rodrigue writes, fellow RB Darrell Henderson is recovering from his own surgery and has missed games in each of his three NFL seasons. Plus, rookie fifth-round RB Kyren Williams suffered a foot injury during OTAs that required surgery and could miss a chunk of training camp. Otherwise, the team will be relying on inexperienced options like Jake Funk, Raymond Calais, and Xavier Jones.

Elsewhere on offense, we may see the Rams sign another QB for the preseason. Rodrigue cites sources who believed the Rams would add a UDFA to serve as a fourth quarterback for training camp. The organization still hasn’t added anyone to the trio of Matthew Stafford, John Wolford, and Bryce Perkins, and Rodrigue opines that the grouping is probably locked in. As a result, the Rams can’t offer much to a free agent QB besides some preseason opportunities, but they’ll likely find someone to fill that role before the start of camp.

Finally, the Rams offensive line will see some changes next season, and that includes right guard after Austin Corbett left for Carolina. To replace the former RG, the coaching staff will have three players compete for the open starting gig, per Rodrigue: Logan Bruss, Coleman Shelton, and Tremayne Anchrum.

Rams Dealing With RB Injuries

The Rams are dealing with some injuries to their running backs corps. Head coach Sean McVay told reporters that running back Kyren Williams broke his foot and had surgery (via Jourdan Rodrigue of The Athletic on Twitter). Fortunately, it sounds like Williams will only miss the first few sessions of training camp, but it’s still a tough break for the rookie.

Meanwhile, Darrell Henderson isn’t participating in on-field work as he deals with a “soft-tissue injury.” As Charean Williams of ProFootballTalk.com writes, Henderson initially aggregated the injury during May OTAs. At the time, McVay indicated that Henderson dealt with the same ailment in 2021, but the RB still managed to appear in 12 games (although he was limited on only a single playoff contest).

While Henderson found himself in and out of the lineup in 2021, he still managed to finish with a career-high 864 yards from scrimmage. Williams was selected in the fifth-round of this year’s draft following a standout career at Notre Dame that saw him collect 31 touchdowns between the 2020 and 2021 seasons.

It’s obviously too early for the Rams to worry about their injury situation, but the team’s depth at RB will certainly be stressed for the time being. The team still has Cam Akers, who led the RB grouping during the Rams’ Super Bowl run, but they lack experienced depth behind him (Henderson and Williams were likely to slot in as the second and third RBs, respectively). As a result, the likes of Jake Funk, Xavier Jones, and Raymond Calais will see increased reps over the next few week, and the current absences could help one of the three snag a final roster spot.

Rams Sign 8-Man 2022 Draft Class

Likely overshadowed by the massive news of star defensive tackle Aaron Donald‘s raise and guaranteed return in 2022, the Rams were able to sign all eight of their selections from the 2022 NFL Draft today.

The only rookie with any expectations of starting, Logan Bruss out of Wisconsin, was their first pick in the draft, despite not hearing his name called until the third round. After the retirement of tackle Andrew Whitworth and guard Austin Corbett‘s departure to the Panthers is free agency, Los Angeles needed to address its offensive line. Veteran tackle Joseph Noteboom is expected to slide in a left tackle for Whitworth, but Bruss will compete with Bobby Evans and Tremayne Anchrum for the the right guard starting job left vacant by Corbett. The Rams ended their draft addressing the offensive line, as well, selecting Michigan State tackle AJ Arcuri with one of their three seventh-round picks.

Los Angeles made several additions to its secondary, as well, through the draft. Cornerbacks Darious Williams and Donte Deayon hit the free agent market, but the Rams were able to bring back Troy Hill via trade after a one-year vacation in Cleveland this offseason. They may not be expected to start right away, but South Carolina State’s Decobie Durant and Georgia’s Derion Kendrick will add some depth to help make up for the free agency losses. With Nick Scott, Jordan Fuller, Taylor Rapp, and Terrell Burgess all returning at safety, UCLA’s Quentin Lake and Kansas State’s Russ Yeast will try to unseat them and each other in order to earn a roster spot at the end of camps.

The Rams lost Sony Michel to the Dolphins this offseason but bring back running backs Cam Akers, who returned from a preseason tear of his Achilles tendon in the last week of the regular season last year, and Darrell Henderson. Los Angeles selected Notre Dame running back Kyren Williams in the fifth round not only for his prowess as a runner but because he showed a talent in college for receiving the ball, as well, a skill that has been missing from the Rams’ backfield since the days of prime Todd Gurley.

Lastly, if Daniel Hardy, an outside linebacker from Montana State, can nab a roster spot, he’ll serve as a depth piece in a stacked linebacker room that houses Bobby Wagner, Leonard Floyd, Ernest Jones, Justin Hollins, Terrell Lewis, and others.

Here are the draft picks the Rams will take into camps with them this summer:

Round 3: No. 104 Logan Bruss, G (Wisconsin) (signed)
Round 4: No. 142 Decobie Durant, CB (South Carolina State) (signed)
Round 5: No. 164 Kyren Williams, RB (Notre Dame) (signed)
Round 6: No. 211 Quentin Lake, S (UCLA) (signed)
Round 6: No. 212 Derion Kendrick, CB (Georgia) (signed)
Round 7: No. 235 Daniel Hardy, OLB (Montana State) (signed)
Round 7: No. 253 Russ Yeast, S (Kansas State) (signed)
Round 7: No. 261 AJ Arcuri, OT (Michigan State) (signed)

Notre Dame’s Kyle Hamilton To Enter NFL Draft

Kyle Hamilton is going pro. On Friday, the Notre Dame safety confirmed that he will forgo the rest of his eligibility to enter the 2022 NFL Draft. 

[RELATED: Arkansas WR Treylon Burks Declares For NFL Draft]

Hamilton, long been pegged as a potential Top 10 pick, will also skip the Fiesta Bowl against Oklahoma State in order to protect his pro career. The 6’4″ safety has been lauded for his range, versatility, and advanced football IQ. Even scouts who have kept a watchful eye on him tend to forget that he’s still only 20 years of age and won’t turn 21 until March.

Hamilton posted 34 tackles, three interceptions, and four passes defensed in just seven games. He should impress even more at the combine when he displays his reported 40-inch vertical leap.

Along with Hamilton, Notre Dame will also lose running back Kyren Williams to the draft. Williams impressed with over 1,000 rushing yards this season and 4.9 yards-per-carry on average. He also added 42 grabs for 359 yards and three receiving TDs for good measure.