Linebacker Terrell Lewis will miss at least the first three weeks of his rookie season with the Rams as the right knee problem isn't as severe as Los Angeles first feared it would be.
Lewis will start the season on the list of non-soccer injuries, said Rams coach Sean McVay on Wednesday when they started training against the Dallas Cowboys in the SoFi Stadium's opening game on Sunday night.
"It's as positive as possible, given the circumstances," McVay said.
McVay said the Rams were concerned that Lewis had an infection caused by previous knee surgery that was badly injured during his college career in Alabama. The Rams eventually discovered that Lewis did not have an infection but has yet to recover a few weeks before making his NFL debut.
"He had some atrophy from the procedure we had to do," McVay said of the knee exam that was done about 10 days ago. "There are just so many different layers."
Since Lewis was on the Rams' active list earlier this week, he only has to sit on the NFL list for three weeks instead of six weeks.
Lewis was a Rams third round pick after a four year career in Alabama in which he didn't play a major role until 2019. After playing frugally as a freshman in 2016, Lewis missed 10 games in 2017 with an upper arm injury and he missed the entire 2018 Crimson Tide season with a knee injury
The Rams still used Lewis for his impressive physical ability and pass-rushing potential. Los Angeles must replace the late pass-rushers Dante Fowler and Clay Matthews from last season's defense.
The Rams replace Lewis on the 53-man roster with Raymond Calais, who was requested by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers training team last weekend.
The Rams loved Calais & # 39; speed and versatility from Louisiana-Lafayette, but Tampa Bay drafted it in the seventh round. When the Bucs signed Leonard Fournette and selected Jaydon Mickens as their returnee, Calais did not have a 53-man roster seat so the Rams could throw themselves.
"He's got a blast," McVay said of Calais. "Every time you have one of these elite traits at this rate, you will get a chance."
McVay remains confident that Darrell Henderson will be ready to play again on Sunday after missing most of the training camp with a thigh strain. The Rams plan to replace Todd Gurley with a three-man tandem of running backs: veteran Malcolm Brown, rookie Cam Akers and Henderson, a sophomore pro.
NOTES: The Rams named eight team captains selected by the players: DT Aaron Donald, DT Michael Brockers, S. John Johnson, QB Jared Goff, WR Robert Woods, WR Cooper Kupp, LT Andrew Whitworth and P. Johnny Hekker. … Los Angeles has added rookie DB J. R. Reed to its training team. Reed, who was instrumental in Georgia's formidable defense last season, signed with Jacksonville as an unoccupied free agent but was lifted last week.