Bannan Brings Bulk to D Line

Posted Jul 31, 2011

The Rams continued their busy free agent season Sunday, officially bringing defensive tackle Justin Bannan into the fold.

Bannan signed a three-year contract with the Rams on Sunday after spending the 2010 season in Denver.

Known as a stout run stopper in the middle, Bannan entered the league as a fifth-round choice by Buffalo in the 2002 NFL Draft following a solid college career at Colorado.

Bannan was a part of the Bills’ rotation for four years before moving to Baltimore’s 3-4 scheme in 2006.

With the Ravens, Bannan began to capitalize on his potential, playing four seasons and making a habit of taking on multiple blockers and freeing up Baltimore’s talented linebacker corps to make plays.

Before last season, Bannan signed a big contract with Denver to play with then Broncos head coach Josh McDaniels.

"Josh had some input on him, having worked with him in Denver so that was important to us," coach Steve Spagnuolo said. "We are always looking for big guys and we have said all along we wanted to build this thing from the inside out and big men are important. We just think we can add him to the mix here."

Bannan started all 16 games, posting 35 tackles with a sack, a forced fumble and four passes defended.

When the Broncos switched defenses and coaching staffs, they opted to release him on March 3.

In nine NFL seasons, Bannan has 237 tackles, 6.5 sacks, three forced fumbles and an interception.

For the Rams, Bannan is reunited with McDaniels, who is now offensive coordinator in St. Louis. He figures to step right in next to Fred Robbins on the inside and be a major contributor, especially against the run.