St. Louis Rams sign 13 rookie free agents

By Jim Thomas

Surprisingly, the Rams went through the entire three-day NFL draft without selecting a running back among their 11 picks. But the Rams are shaking the bushes for potential help in the backfield.

Two of the 13 undrafted rookies signed to free agent contracts by St. Louis are running backs, including All-Big 12 selection Keith Toston of Oklahoma State. Toston, 6-0, 213, gained 1,218 yards and scored 11 rushing touchdowns last season for the Cowboys. He also caught 25 passes for 261 yards.

Over his college career, Toston averaged 5.8 yards a carry and gained 2,725 yards rushing. A tough downhill runner with good vision, Toston lacks breakaway speed, which may explain why he wasn't drafted. He was recently timed in 4.6 seconds in the 40.

The other rookie free agent running back is De'Maundray Woolridge of Idaho. Nicknamed the Diesel, the 5-9, 241-pound Woolridge was named Humanitarian Bowl MVP after scoring two TDs. Overall, he scored 18 TDs last season, rushing for 979 yards on 171 carries.

Other free agents signed by Rams

Jermelle Cudjo; DT; 6-3; 298; Central Oklahoma
Four-year starter played in Cactus Bowl all-star game after finishing with 58 tackles, 3 1/2 sacks.

Freddie Harris; LB; 6-2; 227; Central Oklahoma
DE in college, projected as outside LB in NFL; team-high six sacks; ran a 4.49 at his pro day.

Cardia Jackson; LB; 6-2; 240; Louisiana-Monroe
Sun Belt Conference co-defensive player of the year; had league-high 117 tackles.

Jeromy Jones; SS; 6-1; 200; Idaho
Had 58 tackles and three forced fumbles in '09; key interception in Humanitarian Bowl.

Simoni Lawrence; LB; 6-0; 232; Minnesota
Team captain had with 85 tackles, two INTs; good workout at NFL scouting combine.

Thaddeus Lewis; QB; 6-1; 215; Duke
Set or tied 54 school records; 10,065 career passing yards is second best in ACC history.

Jamie McCoy; FB; 6-3; 242; Texas A&M
Caught 78 passes for 867 yards over final two college seasons; will be tried at fullback.

Brandon McRae; WR; 6-4; 205; Mississippi State
Had 51 catches for 518 yards as a junior in '08 but suffered a late-season broken leg.

Roderick Owens; WR; 6-0; 183; Florida State
Led Seminoles with 61 catches for 729 yards in '09; had 98-yard TD pass vs. North Carolina.

Darian Stewart; SS; 5-11; 216; South Carolina
Three-year starter had 58 tackles, seven tackles for loss, three breakups in '09.

Kennedy Tinsley; FB; 5-11; 226; North Carolina
Reserve linebacker and special teamer will be tried at fullback in St. Louis.