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Michael Sam won't be signed to Rams practice squad

With one of the deepest defensive lines in the league, St. Louis has elected to fill its practice unit with other depth-needy positions.

Marc Serota

SB Nation 2014 NFL Guide

When news broke on Saturday that Michael Sam had been released by the St. Louis Rams in preparation for the 53-man roster deadline, it was accompanied by the qualifier that he would likely make it onto the team's 10-man practice squad. That's not happening.

Sam will not be signed onto the Rams' practice squad, according to Albert Breer of NFL Network. With defensive line being one of the deepest positions on the team, if not the league, Breer says St. Louis plans on "using those spots to back up areas without depth."

The Rams have not released an official list of the 10 players that beat Sam out, but Turf Show Times tells us that six names have been reported: OL Brandon Washington, OT Sean Hooey, WR Justin Veltung, DT Matt Conrath, LB Kevin Reddick, S Matt Daniels.

Here's Ryan Van Bibber of Turf Show Times on how those players match up with the team's depth:

The offensive line depth is definitely a need, not that either one of those guys is a game-changer. They only kept five linebackers -- they kept six last year -- so the one linebacker makes some sense. Stedman Bailey's suspension leaves them light. The other two are head scratchers. Conrath got some playing time last year. It seems like Daniels has been around forever, and he's constantly hurt.

Sam's inability to land a gig with the Rams wasn't for lack of production. He led the team in tackles in the final preseason game and finished the four games with 11 tackles (10 solo), three sacks and five quarterback hits. Head coach Jeff Fisher was also careful to stress that it had nothing to do with distractions and Sam's high profile.

"There will be no challenges, no challenges whatsoever," Fisher said about Sam making it on with another team. "He's not about drawing attention to himself. He kept his head down and he worked, and you can't ask anything more out of any player for that matter. But there's no challenges with respect to Mike Sam and the second opportunity that lies ahead."