With the offseason program complete and training camp on the horizon, it's time to look ahead. As part of the preparation for training camp, theRams.com will be spotlighting a handful of players new to the Rams' roster. The series continues with a look at rookie cornerback Robert Rochell.
How He Got Here: The 6-foot-2, 195-pound Rochell was drafted in fourth third round (130th overall) by the Rams, using one of the selections acquired in a draft-day trade with the Jaguars for the 121st and 209th overall picks. Prior to arriving in Los Angeles, Rochell recorded 104 total tackles, 38 pass breakups and 10 interceptions while starting 24 of 42 games in three seasons at the University of Central Arkansas.
What's Next: Similar to his Rams draft classmates joining the defensive line room, Rochell has been added to a cornerback group with a key departure of its own in Troy Hill, who signed a four-year deal with the Browns this spring as an unrestricted free agent, putting that third cornerback role up for grabs. However, David Long Jr. (three seasons of experience) and Dont'e Deayon (four) return this year, so there will be plenty of competition for the spot. While Rams general manager Les Snead after Day 3 of the draft said Rochell is still "raw" – he joined Central Arkansas as a wide receiver initially before switching to cornerback – but has lots of athleticism upside. Meanwhile, Rams head coach Sean McVay on June 4 said he had seen Rochell's confidence grow over the last two weeks of the offseason program and was pleased with his improvement. Rochell's development will be worth watching closely.
Bet You Didn't Know: Rochell's selection by Los Angeles in the fourth round made him the highest-drafted player in UCA history, surpassing defensive end Larry Hart, who was chosen by the Jacksonville Jaguars in the fifth round (No. 143 overall) in 2009.
Quotable: "Right now, I'm learning the defense as a whole, just to be prepared for anything that will come. Just trying to get all the positions down, know what the calls are and be able to communicate with everybody on the field, to put myself in position (so that) if I have to play anywhere else, I'll be ready." – Robert Rochell on June 4
Take a look back at rookie cornerback Robert Rochell's first offseason with the Los Angeles Rams.