Friday, October 29, 2010

Rams sign Lewis/Butler to help deal with the injury bug

The Rams have signed former pro-bowl strong safety Michael Lewis. Lewis was released by the 49ers this season by his own request. Lewis played under coach Steve Spagnuolo in Philadelphia, so he is somewhat familiar with the defense.

Lewis is 30 years old, and was a 2nd round draft pick when he entered the league with the Eagles in 2002. Lewis has had eight seasons with 100 or more tackles, and he even made the pro-bowl in 2004. The signing was a response to strong safety James Butler's knee injury, as well as safety Darian Stewart's hamstring injury.

The roster spot was made possible by adding defensive-tackle Clifton Ryan to the injury reserve. The departure of Ryan is an unfortunate one, as he was a solid part of the defensive-tackle rotation. Ryan has been battling a series of migraines for the majority of the 2010 season, and his only game this season came in week one, against the Arizona Cardinals.

On another note, cornerback Quincy Butler was re-signed by the Rams. Butler was a member of the team throughout training camp, but was cut by the team towards the end of the preseason.

Overall, the additions of Lewis and Butler seem like solid moves. They aren't permanent solutions to the defensive-back problem, but they are both familiar with the Rams' defensive scheme, so therefor the learning curve will be small, and they will hopefully be ready to contribute come Sunday against the Carolina Panthers.

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