After three practices over a pair of days, the Rams rookie minicamp has come to an end.
"Finishing up today, we feel like things went really well — kind of got out of it what we wanted to accomplish," head coach Sean McVay said. "It was a very good weekend for us and we feel good about it."
In terms of who stood out, McVay named many of the club's draft picks. But with this particular camp, it's a bit easier to evaluate those at skill positions — like tight end Gerald Everett, and wide receivers Cooper Kupp and Josh Reynolds — because the players aren't wearing pads. Plus, the Rams didn't necessarily have big numbers on the offensive or defensive lines, so they were doing more 7-on-7 drills than usual.
"Cooper was a guy that consistently showed up. He got a lot of touches and I think it was predicated on the routes that he was running. The quarterbacks did a good job finding him," McVay said. "But like we mentioned yesterday, I thought Josh showed really well. Gerald had his moments where he did some really good things. Even Sam Rogers — he catches a couple balls coming out of the backfield and showed his versatility and athleticism, why you likeed him at Virginia Tech.
"Johnson moved around really well," McVay continued. "He's a smooth safety, got great natural ball skills when you watch him in just the individual drills. So those guys that are our skill players that we took, we feel good about them."
A safety out of Boston College, Johnson could appear at both safety spots — strong and free. McVay said Saturday that defensive coordinator Wade Phillips likes to have versatile safeties, and Johnson has shown an ability to do both.
"I think when you have a safety who can play both underneath as a box defender and as a middle safety, or half-field, quarter safety, it gives you more flexibility," McVay said. "And that was one of the things we liked about John."
While McVay made no guarantees, he did say there's a chance many of those draft picks may play right away.
"I think the idea is that we're expecting some of these guys to contribute and they certainly have to earn it and we know that we're always looking to create competition at all spots," McVay said. "Whoever we think is the best player to give us the best chance to have success is who's going to play. I think what you see from some of those players at the receiver, at the tight end position, you're encouraged and you're hoping that it'll project when we get out here with all the veterans and you really see where things are ramped up a little bit."
That is the next step for the rookies on the roster, getting up to speed with the veterans. That's a process that will begin in the classroom. According to McVay, the club has focused more on movement and the fundamentals the last two days. In the coming weeks, they'll truly install the system.
"Now what we get a chance to do is teach it from a foundational level, really be thorough with that so we can add concepts and schemes on top of each other, they make sense, and there's a reason why, and they start to understand that," McVay said. "That's when I think the true learning and understanding of our system starts to take place."
But there's also an evaluation process that is already underway. While Los Angeles' draft picks likely have solidified spots on the club's 90-man roster, there could be some turnover given the amount of undrafted free agents and tryout players the Rams brought in for the weekend.
"We're going to sit down as a staff and with Les [Snead] and his staff as well, kind of talk about the weekend, and figure out if there are any changes that are going to be made as far as how to figure out our 90-man roster," McVay said.