Despite appearing to be on the trade block over the last few weeks, talk is beginning to heat up about the possibility surrounding the Los Angeles Rams giving Trumaine Johnson an extension.
A little over a month ago, the Los Angeles Rams made an easy decision to place the franchise tag on Trumaine Johnson for the second year in a row, making him the highest-paid cornerback heading into the 2017 season at just under $17 million. As hefty as this price was, the last thing the Rams could afford to see happen was Johnson test the free agency market, and end up with a different team like Janoris Jenkins did with the New York Giants last offseason.
Of course, just because Los Angeles hit Johnson up with the franchise tag again doesn’t mean they’re fully convinced on keeping him on board for the 2017 season since the team has apparently been listening to offers from teams in need of help at cornerback. While a trade could easily still end up happening, it appears the Rams are considering all options at this point in the offseason, and could even end up giving Johnson an extension.
ESPN’s Alden Gonzalez discussed on Sunday how an extension between Johnson and Los Angeles could happen before the July 15 deadline, especially if it helps decrease the team’s cap number for 2017. To see the Rams go from shopping Johnson to other teams to all of a sudden considering an extension seems like a complete turnaround, but keep in mind nothing is set in stone at the moment, and they certainly have plenty of time to think about what would be best for the team.
The argument can be made that Johnson still has a long way to go when it comes to proving he’s capable of handling the responsibilities of a No. 1 cornerback, and if that wasn’t the case, Los Angeles would have given him a long-term deal a long time ago. No matter what happens with Johnson, at least there’s plenty of reason to be excited about what’s in store for the Rams’ defense heading into next year now that Wade Phillips has taken over the duties at defensive coordinator under Sean McVay.