The 2018 NFL season has unfortunately come to an end, passing in the blink of an eye. There’s plenty to be excited about for the upcoming offseason – the combine, free agency, the draft – but you don’t have to go six months before watching another football game.
The Alliance of American Football is launching its inaugural season this weekend, a league made up of eight teams. There are countless former NFL players set to take the field this weekend and throughout the spring, including a handful of familiar ex-Rams.
Here are some of the most recognizable names on AAF rosters.
Perez was a fan favorite last year thanks to his eye-popping numbers in college and remarkable story to even make it to the NFL. Perez signed with the Rams after going undrafted, but he was waived as a part of the final cuts in September. He was signed to the practice squad the next day, but the Rams released him again a few weeks later. He has yet to appear in a regular-season game in the NFL, but a strong showing in the AAF could land him on a roster this offseason.
Speaking of fan favorites, Spruce will also be in action this weekend. He signed with the Rams as an undrafted free agent in 2016 and caught everyone’s attention in his first preseason game with six receptions, 51 yards and a touchdown at the Coliseum – the Rams’ first game back in L.A. He didn’t play a regular-season game that year and has yet to do so since. He was waived by the Rams before the 2017 season began and has bounced around the NFL the past two seasons.
Stacy has the most NFL experience of any former Rams player in the AAF. He played two seasons with St. Louis from 2013-14 after being a fifth-round pick, rushing 326 times for 1,266 yards and eight touchdowns. After the Rams drafted Todd Gurley in 2015, Stacy asked to be traded and his wish was granted. He was dealt to the Jets, who he played eight games for that year, but he was waived in 2016 and retired in 2017.
Gilbert was a sixth-round pick of the Rams in 2014 but never played a game for them. He landed on the practice squad after being waived before the season started, but he was cut less than two months later.
Green was an undrafted signing by the Rams in 2016 out of TCU. He was released in the final round of cuts but the Rams signed him to the practice squad. In Week 16, he was promoted to the active roster for the final two games but never touched the ball.
The Rams took Rhaney in the sixth round of the 2014 draft and lasted three years with the team. He was active for all 32 games from 2015-16, starting one game in 2015 while the team was in St. Louis. He was most recently with the Redskins in 2018 but was waived in December.
There are also several other former Rams players set to debut in the AAF this weekend, including Chunky Clements, Curtis Mikell, Ryan Davis and Terrence McGee, among others.
Additionally, Mike Martz is the head coach of the San Diego Fleet, while O.J. Atogwe is the DBs coach for the Memphis Express. There are connections to the Rams all over the AAF, which makes the league even more interesting for fans in L.A. and St. Louis.
There are four games this weekend, beginning on Feb. 9 at 8 p.m. ET.
San Diego at San Antonio – Saturday, 8 p.m. ET
Atlanta at Orlando – Saturday, 8 p.m. ET
Memphis at Birmingham – Sunday 4 p.m. ET
Salt Lake at Arizona – Sunday, 8 p.m. ET
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