Ed "Pi Double i" Henderson
Last week, the Los Angeles Rams front office executed roster moves that sent their all-pro cornerback Marcus Peters to the Baltimore Ravens and acquiring linebacker Kenny Young in that trade. They would also acquire all-pro cornerback Jalen Ramsey from the Jacksonville Jaguars in a massive deal and in addition acquired offensive lineman Austin Corbett from the Cleveland Browns. As the NFL trade deadline nearly approaches, the Rams perhaps can still become buyers before the Tuesday 4 pm deadline.
The expectations from many are that the Rams are not finished shopping for players that can help assist their return back to the Super Bowl. At this point, if they can buy the farm, general manager Les Snead will discover a way to make it happen. Since the firing of Rams former head coach Jeff Fisher, Snead has been able to generate some magnificent trades and lure in high caliber free agent players.
Yesterday, the Rams defeated the winless Cincinnati Bengals 24-10 at Wembley Stadium in London, England. Following their victory, head coach Sean McVay questioned about expectations of any further trades that the Rams may execute before the deadline. McVay would respond:
"To say that we're done, you know, I don't know; we think we always looking to do things that we think that are in the best interest of our football team." "But, those are some things that you know Les and I will look at and we will figure out if there is a situation to be had that may be upgrades us that fits within the framework of a not only just this year, but the entirety of what we wanna do for the next couple years." "But, I would never say never." "But, I don't know that you expect some kind of move like what the Ramsay one was, but you will see that be something that we'll evaluate this next week." "Really, if it ends up, the deadline is coming up in the next couple of days." "So, it will be a short window for us to do anything with that flight back." "There are always things that come up in some of those discussions but, for the most part, we like to keep those things in house."
It has become apparent that the Rams run game is not the same; it previously been over the first two seasons under McVay. Mainly due to the fact the Rams allowed two veterans to walk and gambled on two second-year players to help anchor their offensive front.
However, that gamble did not pay off, as the Rams offensive line took exposure in week four against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers who embarrassed the Rams at home. The loss to the Buc's was the first of three consecutive losses for the Rams as they seek to find answers.
Starting offensive guard, Joseph Noteboom lost for the season after suffering a season-ending MCL and ACL tears against the San Francisco 49ers. Second-year offensive lineman Jamil Demby replaced Noteboom but struggled significantly in the game, which prompted the front office to trade for Corbett from the Browns.
However, the Rams have not played Corbett since acquiring him as he has been inactive for both games. Instead, the Rams shifted rookie David Edwards at left guard as he played great at that position. The Rams pass protection appears to be better; however, the run game still is not synching.
Center Brian Allen has struggled some this season, including having a meltdown at a crucial point in the game against the Seattle Seahawks that contributed to a Rams loss. On the Ram's final drive, Allen was unfocused and failed to snap the ball, resulting in a delay of game penalty. A few plays later, he lost sight of the snap count resulting in the entire offensive line to a false start . There could be a potential change at that position by acquiring Corbett, who is flexible and can play every position on the offensive line.
However, this offensive line needs another veteran presence upfront and who could play a few more years for this team. With the aging Andrew Whitworth who is expected to retire at the end of the season, Noteboom appears to become his replacement. This team needs to bring in a player that would provide an immediate impact to the line and create an identity.
Trent Williams (tackle)
The Rams should make a trade to the Washington Redskins for Trent Williams, their all-pro tackle. Yes, we we already know that they have a left tackle in Whitworth, however, it makes sense by acquiring Williams for these three reasons:
The question is, what can the Rams offer the Redskins by acquiring Williams in a trade after already giving up a 2020 and 2021 first-round picks that landed them Jalen Ramsey? Under McVay's tenure, the Rams yet to have drafted with a first-round pick after trading picks away moving up in the 2016 NFL Draft to select Jared Goff with the number one overall pick. In the 2018 NFL Draft, they traded their first-round pick to the New England Patriots for wide receiver Brandin Cooks, and in the 2019 NFL Draft they would again trade back their 31st overall pick to the Atlanta Falcons for a second and third round picks.
Snead has been on point with late draft picks, selecting players that have outplayed first-round selections. For instance, wide-receiver Cooper Kupp, safety John Johnson III, tight-ends Tyler Higbee, and Gerald Everett, and linebacker Samson Ebukam. This blueprint of success, the Rams can offer their 2022 first-round draft pick and a player. The question is what player can the Rams offer along with the first-round pick.
Josh Reynolds (receiver)
The Redskins are currently looking for depth at the receiver position in which they have rookie Terry McLaurin, a third-round selection from Ohio State who currently leads the team in receptions, receiving yardage and receiving touchdowns. Veteran Paul Richardson Jr is second but do not even half of McLaurin's yardage total.
What does Reynolds bring to the Redskins aside from his talent? He brings the team two and a half seasons of experience from a team that has a unique passing system. Along with his experience, Reynolds can start for nearly half of the teams in the NFL.
Reynolds has a career 45 receptions for 613 receiving yards and seven touchdowns which is an upgrade for the Redskins. After receiver Cooper Kupp went down last season, Reynolds stepped right in replacing Kupp and caught 29 passes for 402 yards and five touchdowns. Let us not forget, this was in addition to Brandin Cooks and Roberts topping 1,000 yards for the season and Kupp's total.
When Kupp returned this season, Reynolds play and stats plummeted, however yesterday against the Bengals, he gave an excellent audition for any team that is exploring receiver help. In the Rams very first series, Cooks took a helmet to helmet hit went down and then placed in the concussion protocol. Reynolds stepped right in and grabbed three receptions for 73 yards and a touchdown. He was the shot in the arm for the Rams offense that needed to help Goff find another open target.
Reynolds seems to have not played with that same tenacity as he did his first two seasons, as his production total has fallen off this season with catching only five receptions for 107 yards and a touchdown. He can go to a team where he can become a starter and have a young quarterback in Dwayne Haskins that he can grow with and make better.
Trading Reynolds will not hurt the Rams as bad as tight end Gerald Everett is making plays in addition with Higbee. They still have Mike Thomas on the roster as well as rookie Nsimba Webster on the practice squad who McVay speaks high on. Reynolds is an absolute great value to go with a first-round pick for a Williams trade.
The Redskins announced just today that they are now open to dealing franchise left tackle. Williams their who have been holding out because he is frustrated with the teams medical staff and the front office which prompted his demand to be traded. This is another plus for the Rams as Williams have history with McVay and the Rams have one of the elite medical staff in the league that is led in part by Reggie Scott.
If a first round and Reynolds not enough, perhaps the Rams can add another later round pick with the trade or even another player. However, Rams need Williams and Williams need the Rams. The salary cap will become a issue, but the Rams seem to be shopping cornerback Aqib Talib for cap relief as one option or the Rams can rent Williams for the rest of the season. Besides those factors, lets see what Snead can pull of by tomorrows deadline.
On another note, expect the Rams to make a move by tomorrow on some player to say the least.