CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- A look at playing time and performance of each of the St. Louis Rams’ drafted rookies and a quick glimpse at the undrafted rookie class in Sunday’s 30-15 loss to the Carolina Panthers.
WR Tavon Austin, first round, No. 8 overall: After only a cameo appearance last week in Houston, Austin was much more involved against the Panthers. He played 32 snaps on offense with 11 more on special teams. While the snap count changed, Austin’s bad luck did not. He had a 63-yard touchdown catch called back for tripping and coughed up a fumble that Carolina turned into a field goal. He caught all five passes he was targeted on for 39 yards and should have had the sixth.
Austin’s role also expanded to include kick-return duties in the absence of Benny Cunningham. He had two returns for 47 yards with a long of 32.
LB Alec Ogletree, first round, No. 30 overall: It was another busy day for Ogletree, who played 59 snaps on defense and three more on special teams. It also wasn’t his most productive game as he finished with five tackles with a tackle for loss.
S T.J. McDonald, third round, No. 71 overall: McDonald missed his third game of the year after suffering a leg fracture against San Francisco. He’s currently on the injured reserve/designated to return list.
WR Stedman Bailey, third round, No. 92 overall: Bailey played 19 snaps on special teams, including a kick return for 26 yards and an assist on a tackle in coverage. He hasn’t had many opportunities to play offense this year and the aforementioned offensive shift makes it unlikely that he will anytime soon, barring injuries.
CB Brandon McGee, fifth round, No. 149 overall: McGee actually got some work beyond special teams Sunday, playing four defensive snaps in addition to his 17 on special teams. He had a tackle and an assist on special teams in unofficial press box statistics.
RB Zac Stacy, fifth round, No. 160 overall: For the third straight week, Stacy was the Rams’ primary running back, playing 45 snaps and finding his way into the end zone for the first time in his young career on a 4-yard catch. Pass catching was a previously unknown skill for Stacy but he caught all four balls thrown his way for 34 yards. On the rushing side, it was tough sledding for Stacy against Carolina’s top-five run defense. He finished with 53 yards on 17 carries.
Undrafted rookie roundup: The Rams’ three active undrafted rookies again played prominent roles on special teams as linebackers Ray-Ray Armstrong and Daren Bates played 19 snaps apiece and Cody Davis played 15.