Analysis: Previewing the interior offensive line position battles

As Rams Training Camp presented by UNIFY Financial Credit Union gets underway, theRams.com will be previewing four key position battles to watch. The series' fourth and final installment breaks down the competition along the interior of Los Angeles' offensive line.

Heading into this year's NFL draft, the perception outside Rams headquarters was that the offensive line should be addressed. They did, but not until the seventh round.

Surprising as it probably was to many pundits whose projections had Los Angeles taking a different direction, that approach seemed to indicate L.A. was comfortable sticking with last year's group to further their development.

That approach has also created strong competition – specifically at center and both guard spots.

Here is a look at the candidates for those spots on Los Angeles' current roster, listed in alphabetical order:

Brian Allen

Experience: Two seasons

Notes: Allen was the Rams' starting center for the first nine games until a Week 10 knee injury at Pittsburgh cost him the rest of the 2019 season. After overcoming that setback and a COVID-19 infection earlier this offseason, he is now healthy, has not had any lingering effects of the virus and is practicing without any restrictions. Including his rookie season in 2018, Allen has played in 16 career games.

Tremayne Anchrum Jr.

Experience: Rookie

Notes: Though he started at tackle for Clemson, he spent the Tigers' bowl practices getting reps at guard – where he's projected to play as a Ram.

Austin Blythe

Experience: Four seasons (three with the Rams)

Notes: Blythe began the 2019 season as L.A.'s starting right guard, then moved to left after Joe Noteboom's season-ending knee injury in Week 6, then center after Brian Allen's season-ending knee injury in Week 10. Blythe has missed only one regular season game since joining the Rams in 2017.

Cohl Cabral

Experience: Rookie

Notes: An undrafted free agent signee out of Arizona State, Cabral showcased durability during his college career by starting 38-straight games from his sophomore year onward.

Austin Corbett

Experience: Two seasons (One with the Rams)

Notes: The No. 33 overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, Corbett started each of the final seven games of the Rams' 2019 season at left guard after Blythe shifted to center.

Jamil Demby

Experience: One season

Notes: Demby appeared in five of L.A.'s first six games in 2019, then was inactive for the remainder of the season. When Blythe sprained his ankle during the Rams' Week 3 game against the Saints, Demby replaced him at right guard.

David Edwards

Experience: One season

Notes: Edwards started at left guard in Weeks 7 and 8 last season, then moved to right guard. He appeared in all 16 games as a rookie, starting in 10 of them.

Bobby Evans

Experience: One season

Notes: Evans handled the Rams' starting right tackle job in place of an injured Rob Havenstein after Havenstein suffered a season-ending knee injury in Week 10 at Pittsburgh. While Evans is listed as a tackle, Rams general manager Les Snead after the 2019 season said that he's also capable of playing guard.

Jeremiah Kolone

Experience: One season

Notes: A 2019 undrafted free agent signee, Kolone spent his rookie season on the team's practice squad.

Joe Noteboom

Experience: Two seasons

Notes: Noteboom started at left guard last season until suffering a season-ending knee injury against the 49ers in Week 6. Including those six contests he played in prior to the setback, he has played in 22 career games entering his third season.

Coleman Shelton

Experience: One season

Notes: Signed to the active roster prior to the start of the 2019 regular season, Shelton appeared in 11 games in his first season in Los Angeles, mainly getting special teams snaps. He returned for his second after being tendered as one of the team's two exclusive rights free agents.

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