What do Hall Davis and Brian Mitchell have in common? They were both 5th round picks out of Louisiana-Lafayette...also known as the Rajin Cajuns (that's gotta be one of the best mascot names out there). Davis' pre-draft analysis had him pinned as DE that had trouble in space and lacked some instincts. As I always do, I asked the Rams' SB Nation editors from Turf Times Show for their assessment of Hall Davis so far this summer:
Van: Davis missed some time in camp with injury (minor stuff) but he did have a couple sacks against Cleveland in the second half in week two of the preseason. I say this without having seen a lot of him...so take it for what it's worth. Davis looks mostly to have one move, a bull rush.
This seems more like finding camp bodies that could fill a need on the practice squad more than anything. The swap of conditional picks made it a no-risk move for both sides.
Hall doesn't have the prototypical size for a 3-4 defensive end nor does he have experience as a LB...so Davis likely will be fighting for a practice squad spot. Joe McAtee, another editor on the Rams' site, gives more detailed insight:
The tough thing about Davis is that the competition he faced in college just doesn't compare to his peers. You look at a guy like George Selvie, and much of the reason he's jumped past Davis and Eugene Sims (another 2010 Rams DE draft pick) is his comfortability with talented OTs. Davis, who played at Louisiana-Lafayette, just didn't face many talented tackles.
In terms of his skill set, it's still so raw it's hard to say. Certainly, as Van pointed out, he's leaned on his power game thus far, but at 6'5", 272 lbs., that's an easy facet of his game to lean on. Still, for his size, he is athletic. It's a matter of applying that athleticism without sacrificing his power (see: Vernon Gholston). He could be an effective run defender early in his career as he develops his pass game, whether that's as a DE in a 4-3 or as an OLB in the 3-4. And in terms of Haslett's scheme, well, he's not the guy he was when he came to St. Louis. Let's just say he's learned a lot. And I think Van's assessment was head on. With George Selvie having such an impressive preseason and even Eugene Sims showing something, Davis was on the outs as a 4-3 DE. With this move, at least the Rams get something for him and the Redskins get a guy they can tinker with..
In short, nothing to get too excited about. Dennis Morris was on the outs, so why not try their luck with an athletic DE.