By Cedric Williams
The Los Angeles Rams are expected to announce the addition of wide receiver Mike Thomas to the club’s 53-man roster sometime today, which would allow the second-year player from Southern Miss to practice with the team as soon as Wednesday and possibly have him available to play this Sunday, when the Rams host the NFC West rival Seattle Seahawks.
Thomas, who had been serving a four-game suspension for violating the NFL’s policy against the use of performance-enhancing drugs, participated in the Rams’ offseason program and even played in preseason games. But he was forced to sit for the first four games of the regular season due to the suspension.
Despite his limited role so far this season, and even last year when he caught just three passes, Rams head coach Sean McVay seemed excited about Thomas’ return and potential when he spoke about him on Monday.
“Mike’s got a lot of value,” McVay said. “He’s got speed (and) I think he will continue to improve with the nuances of playing the position. But he’s also a big asset to (special teams coordinator John Fassel) and the special teams. So how that affects the 46 on game day is something that we’re going to monitor as the week progresses, but Mike’s a guy that we’re glad to get back.”
To make room for Thomas, the Rams will have to cut one player off the current roster. McVay was adamant on Monday that the player will not be another wide receiver.
That means the Rams, who already have six receivers on the roster, will carry seven players at that position once Thomas is added. Only one other team in the league (the Cincinnati Bengals) currently carries seven receivers on its active roster.
“We’ll keep seven receivers,” McVay said. “Those six we have a lot of confidence in, so we’re going to keep seven and we’re going to get Mike up. We don’t actually have to make that decision in terms of when his roster spot affects somebody else for a couple of days. But those are discussions that we have started to have weeks in advance.”