St. Louis Rams Add DT Doug Worthington to Practice Squad


The St. Louis Rams added defensive tackle Doug Worthington to their practice squad on Monday, as first reported by Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The Rams had two openings on the practice squad following the Tennessee Titans’ signing of cornerback Jemea Thomas to their active roster on December 3 and the Houston Texans’ signing of quarterback Case Keenum on Monday.

Worthington, a 6-foot-5, 318-pounder, was drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the seventh round of the 2010 NFL Draft. The 27-year-old, who attended Ohio State University, has bounced around quite a bit during his five years in the league. After being released following training camp as a rookie, Worthington spent time on both the practice squads and active rosters of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Washington Redskins. After being in the Redskins’ system from 2011 to 2013, he was released in August of this year and went on to spend 11 days in the San Diego Chargers’ training camp before being released by them as well.

It’s worth noting that Worthington, who has three tackles over six career games, has spent nearly the entirety of his career in a 3-4 defense, with the only exception being the two months he spent with Tampa in 2010. With that said, two of the Rams’ defensive tackles, Kendall Langford and Alex Carrington, also had extensive experience playing as ends in a 3-4, so that shouldn’t be something that holds him back in St. Louis.

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The addition of Worthington continues the Rams’ trend of signing older, experienced players to their practice squad despite the traditional philosophy that the group should be used for the development of young players. Worthington is the seventh player aged 26 or older who the Rams have had on the practice squad in 2014, following Steven Baker, Case Keenum, Marshall McFadden, Devon Wylie, Brandon Washington, and Korey Toomer. The oldest of the group, McFadden, is 28, making him older than more than 80 percent of the players on the Rams’ active roster.

The Rams now have six full-fledged defensive tackles in their system: Worthington and fellow practice squad member Matt Conrath, as well as Langford, Carrington, Michael Brockers, and Aaron Donald on the active roster. In addition, rookie Ethan Westbrooks has seen action at all four positions on the defensive line, while backup ends William Hayes and Eugene Sims have experience moving inside on passing downs. Considering that the Rams have made two of their backups, Carrington and Westbrooks, healthy scratches in recent weeks, it’s somewhat curious that they felt the need to further bolster their depth in the defensive trenches.