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Rookies Robert Rochell, Bobby Brown III became fast friends

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – A connection that formed during the pre-draft process has continued as Rams teammates for cornerback Robert Rochell and defensive lineman Bobby Brown III.

The pair of newcomers to Los Angeles' defense first linked up and became fast friends while training at EXOS ahead of this year's NFL Draft, bonding over similar upbringings and close relationships with their moms. Both were later drafted by the Rams in the fourth round of this year's draft.

"Me and Scoot – I don't call him Robert, I call him Scoot – we kind of got a similar background," Brown said during a June 4 video conference. "He's from Louisiana, I'm from Mississippi, kind of hard upbringing, real close-knit to our moms and everything. So like, it's crazy that I've been training with him since EXOS for the draft and everything, we got cool there and then we both get drafted here. And he's been my friend since then."

On the field, Brown and Rochell are joining the NFL's No. 1-ranked defense in 2020 and aiming to help L.A. repeat the feat. When not working together to help their new team accomplish that goal, they're hanging out off the field as well.

"That's a funny guy, man," Rochell said during a June 4 video conference. "A guy that can make you laugh all day. Big character. A guy that loves this game just as me, so he's a guy that I be with both on the field and off the field. Just having a guy around that's similar to me in characteristics is everything. We enjoy the game together, we live life outside of this together, so having him around is great."

While it's still very early in their careers and the Rams' preparation for the 2021 season, both made positive first impressions during the Rams' offseason program this spring.

"I really like the way that Bobby Brown has worked with that defensive line group," Rams head coach Sean McVay said during a June 4 video conference. "(Run game coordinator and defensive line) coach (Eric) Henderson and (assistant defensive line) coach (Marcus) Dixon do a great job of really challenging them. I like the attention to detail Bobby has displayed in those drills."

As for Rochell, McVay was pleased with the progress displayed during team drills.

"I like what I'm seeing from Rochell in terms of the improvement, where you do get a little bit better feel for some of our perimeter skill players when you're seeing routes, (and) you're really seeing these guys play coverage concepts, his understanding (of) where his play-offs fit within the different coverages that we're activating with him playing that corner spot," McVay said. "He's gotten more and more confident over these last couple of weeks since we've actually been able to compete against one another, offense versus defense in those seven on seven settings."

Brown said the two of them have gotten closer since becoming teammates. He's also rooting for Rochell to succeed.

"Man, that's a great guy, honestly," Brown said. "He got his head on right. I can't wait to see what he'll be able to do later in his career because he loves football, for real."

Guessing the feeling is mutual.

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