In order to re-familiarize ourselves with Countess, who only spent a brief time in Philly before spending most of his career in Los Angeles, I thought it’d benefit BGN readers to get a Rams perspective on him. So, I reached out to good friend Joe McAtee (@3k_) of Turf Show Times. Here’s what he had to say about Countess.
1) Countess was with the Eagles for one summer before joining the Rams. Can you sum up his time with LA?
Yeah, his arrival was under the radar as a practice squad signing after roster cuts in 2016. Ultimately, he’s been a fine depth addition. He was never given much of a chance as a defensive back, but part of that was the 2017 switch. With a new coaching staff and Defensive Coordinator Wade Phillips overseeing things, DB Lamarcus Joyner got moved back to safety as the Rams took S John Johnson III in the third round of the 2017 NFL Draft. Those two moves essentially put a lid on any playing time for Countess on defense barring emergency. Still, he offered occasional safety support with return availability which the Rams turned to in 2018.
2) What was the reaction to the team cutting him? Did the Rams make the right move?
Most fans were fine with the move if only because the Rams were looking for cap space. We’re tight up against it and needed some breathing room to sign our rookie draft class. We offered a reduced deal to Countess, but he refused it. And honestly, good for him. He deserves a chance to meet his market value and maybe increase it. That wasn’t going to happen with the Rams who added Eric Weddle and drafted Taylor Rapp in the last two months.
3) What are his strengths?
Athleticism. That’s obvious as a defensive back who offers return game capability, but he’s a strong athlete first...
4) What are his weaknesses?
...and a defensive back second. He’s small, and he’s often worked out of small spaces. If his job were just to run, he’d be much better. But the technical requirements of defensive backs are where he gets easily outdone.
5) Do you think he can handle significant playing time at safety or should he really only be used on special teams?
The latter. That’s not a knock against him, but it’s just who he is.
Put it like this. If the former were really in play, you guys wouldn’t have released him in the first place to put in the last few years with is.
6) Anything to know about him off the field?
Nope. And that’s just a testament to who he is. He’s the kind of guy who isn’t going to cause any problems or issues and will do his job and be a great depth guy. For his role, you can do worse.