May 26 Rams OTAs: News And Notes
As important as it is to note who was in attendance, who was not in attendance could be even more notable. Among the Los Angeles Rams players not on the practice field were Leonard Floyd, Aaron Donald, A’Shawn Robinson, Greg Gaines, Jalen Ramsey, and Troy Hill. Cam Akers and Darrell Henderson were the most notable players from the offense that didn’t participate. Henderson missed because of a soft tissue injury.
That left Jake Funk and rookie Kyren Williams with the bulk of the running back duties. Jake Funk looked good when running and cutting coming off of his season-ending hamstring injury. The running back room is in an interesting place with a healthy Funk and the newly drafted Williams. It will be something to watch as their roles develop
A big question mark last season was at punt returner. There weren’t a lot of reps at today’s Rams OTAs for special teams drills, but the returning rotation included Tutu Atwell, Kyren Williams, Raymond Calais, and, of course, Brandon Powell
Powell should be considered to be the front runner for the job based on last season’s performance, but there are concerns when trying to fit him on a 53-man roster. Powell was added to the team after several injuries on offense. His place on the team could be directly related to the health and development of Tutu Atwell.
Atwell was worked a lot in today’s installment of LA Rams OTAs. He is still small and he is still incredibly fast. He doesn’t look like he has put on the weight that the Rams wanted to see him add going back to his rookie offseason. But speed is speed and Coach Sean McVay recognizes that Atwell has a high upside. McVay told Conner Zimmer of SI.com, “I still believe Tutu can be that guy…He’s looked really good. He’s done a great job of responding the right way.”
Of course, this time of year everyone is optimistic about everyone on the roster. But rest assured, the Rams are committed to his development and so is Atwell himself.
Atwell appeared to be more confident and knowledgeable than he did in training camp last year. He lined up in the right spots and ran the correct routes, which wasn’t always the case last year. That confidence has translated to being more sure-handed. He caught everything thrown his way. That included throws he had to reach for. That’s great news for the status of his injured shoulder that was operated on some eight months prior.
Atwell and the rest of the receiving corps were at Rams OTAs today. Including the newest addition Allen Robinson. He and Cooper Kupp were seemingly attached at the hip. Van Jefferson was at the facility, but he didn’t participate in drills. Wide receiver Lance McCutcheon, undrafted free agent rookie out of Montana State, made a few spectacular grabs while the team was in 7-on-7 drills.
He is 6’3” 202 lbs and he set the MSU record with over 19 yards per catch in college. He also posted an impressive 6.82 three-cone drill at his pro day. That time would have put him third at the combine among wide receivers.
Jacob Harris and Tyler Higbee both participated in today’s Rams OTAs as well. Incredibly Higbee was doing so without a knee brace despite injuring it late in the playoffs. Harris on the other hand was still in a knee brace but looked strong running sprits on the sideline. He was also doing a running drill while sinking his hips, which puts a lot of strain on his knees.
The media was given a chance to talk to the Rams Vice President of Sports Medicine and Performance Reggie Scott about his work within the Professional Football Athletic Trainers Society. He spoke more specifically about the NFL Foundation Ethnic Minority and Female Athletic Training Student Scholarship Program and the NFL Diversity of Sports Medicine Pipeline Initiative. Both programs are designed to build and foster diversity within the medical side of the NFL.
More info about those can be found at PFATS and NFL launches initiative to increase diversity in sports medicine.
Stay tuned for more updates from Rams OTAs on June 1st and 2nd.