Without defensive coordinator Gregg Williams, running the defense thus far appears to be a collaborative effort.
On the first day, players noted instructions seemed to be coming from everywhere. That includes coach Jeff Fisher, who figures to be more hands-on than he might have anticipated. Fisher said the staff has been efficient picking up the slack for Williams, suspended indefinitely by the NFL for his role in the bounty scandal during his time with the Saints.
"You're hearing stuff from a couple different people, but they're all speaking the same language," middle linebacker James Laurinaitis said. "People have either been brought up in this defense or have played in variations of it. You get bits and pieces from everybody."
"You know, it's gone smooth and the staff has done a great job adjusting," Fisher said. "So, things are going fine. For obvious reasons, I'll be a little more involved than I had planned, but that's OK."
The likely choice to make the calls on game day is assistant head coach Dave McGinnis, who has extensive experience as a defensive coordinator, but players haven't been told how the chain of command will function. Both McGinnis and secondary coach Chuck Cecil have been defensive coordinators under Fisher.
Players were advised not to go full-out and impress the staff.
The Rams did not make their defensive assistants available for interviews Tuesday. The team said Williams isn't expected to speak for "several months."
The Rams have signed 10 players in free agency, largely addressing defensive deficiencies, starting with a big three of cornerback Cortland Finnegan, defensive tackle Kendall Langford and center Scott Wells. The latest additions are Dunbar, defensive end William Hayes and defensive tackle Trevor Laws.