In a curious twist of events, the LA Rams may actually emerge as the winners of the Seahawks trade for Jets’ Adams
In a surprising turn of events today, the LA Rams division rival Seattle Seahawks managed to pull off a blockbuster trade with the New York Jets for their All-Pro safety Jamal Adams. Not just any trade mind you, but the type of trade that proves the Seahawks are going all-in this year to win it all while they still have a window of opportunity. While we’ll just stick a pin in that discussion of winning it all, let’s mention the NFL teams in the LA Rams field of vision who are impacted by this move, Shall we?
Of course, there are the division rival Seattle Seahawks. There are the New York Jets, a 2020 schedule opponent. Of course, there are the LA Rams themselves, a team fighting hard to retake the NFC West division crown. In fact, the possibility of adding Adams to the Rams roster was mentioned and ignored this season. And then there are the defending NFC West Champions, the San Francisco 49ers, a team in need of safety help and was very much linked via NFL rumors to Jamal Adams. Okay, we’ve lined up the teams impacted directly or indirectly by this move. So how does this play out from the Rams perspective?
Jets move to the future
For starters, let’s address the obvious. With the move, any uncertainty over the Rams’ ability to defeat the Jets this season is over. Kaput. Finito. The Jets are bagging the 2020 season and are looking to get better tomorrow. While that doesn’t truly surprise anyone, it does create a better post-draft situation for the Rams than before the blockbuster trade went down.
The Jets parted with arguably one of the best NFL safeties in the game today, and the return from that trade is the value embedded in the 2021 and 2022 NFL Drafts. Yes, the Jets are a weaker team from this trade.
Now let’s consider another team, the NFC rival San Francisco 49ers.
How to make the most of the 2020 NFL season from your home?
How can you enjoy the savory aromas of tailgating at home: 3 LA Rams tailgate menus to enjoy from your own kitchen
How you can enjoy the feel of a stadium from your own home: 3 ways to optimize your LA Rams virtual football experience
How you can avoid missing out on the debut of SoFi Stadium this year: 3 ways to convert your home into an LA Rams mini SoFi experience
49ers face much stiffer competition
The San Francisco 49ers rose from ashes to the top of the mountain in 2019, primarily thanks to the pass-catching ability of tight-end Geoge Kittle and the running ability of their running back by committee approach. Teams that placed eight-in-the-box to defend the run were demolished by Kittle in the passing game. Teams that focused on defending Kittle in the passing game were demolished by the 49ers running game. By adding Adams, the Seattle Seahawks can defend both Kittle and the 49ers running game. The Seahawks had no answer for Kittle in 2019, when he hauled in 7-7 for 86 yards, plus rushed for another seven yards to propel the 49ers to victory. The only loss for the 49ers was an overtime loss to the Seahawks when Kittle was unable to play. With Adams, the Seahawks will be able to win games vs. the 49ers with Kittle on the field.
Let’s not forget that the San Francisco 49ers were once hotly rumored to be close to a deal to acquire Adams themselves. That deal, while collapsing the 49ers chances down the road, almost certainly would have made them a solid odds-on favorite to win it all this year. They are sorely lacking elite safety play, and Adams is incredible in both pass and run defense. The deal did not occur, the 49ers remain weak at safety, and as a result, the Rams benefit once more. Bottom line, how does this hurt the 49ers? The Seahawks can now defend Kittle. That means the certain wins are now a 50/50 shot for both teams.
But San Francisco was a team that truly could have benefited by the upgrade at the safety position that Adams would have brought to their roster. The 49ers lose out because Adams would have made the 49ers very tough to beat. They missed a golden chance to get better. And the funny thing is, that the rival Seahawks grabbed Adams out from under their noses. That’s a good thing for the Rams. Now, about the Seattle Seahawks.
Who will make the LA Rams roster?
If you want to know how the 90 man roster is shaping up: Pre-camp LA Rams projected 2020 depth chart
If you are interested in the LA Rams projected 53 man roster: LA Rams 53-man roster prediction
If you like rooting for underdogs: 7 underdog LA Rams UDFAs who have real shot to earn a roster spot
Are Seahawks too little too late?
Yes, it has already begun. In one trade, the hype machine driving the Seattle Seahawks to Super Bowl LV as the NFC Champion has already begun in force. Yes, All-Pro Jamal Adams is good, elite good. But I’m not convinced that his presence on that Seattle Seahawks defense is a huge upgrade. Certainly, not an instant pass to the Super Bowl, do not play games, do not collect experience playing together. Was the defense the problem last year? In a word, yes. The Seahawks 26th-ranked defense was only better than that of the Arizona Cardinals last year, while their offense was nearly as good as the Rams, falling just seven yards behind the Rams.
The hope for Seahawks fans is the belief that Adams and new teammate Quinton Dunbar will form the second coming of the Legion of Boom. But Dunbar is embroiled in legal issues which have placed him on the NFL’s exempt list. That means that he will not be permitted to be involved in any team-related activities. So adding Adams only to lose Dunbar and trade away Bradley McDougald in terms of 2020 production is a push.
While the Seahawks worked hard to address that defense in free agency, they have parted ways with Jadaveon Clowney, Ezekiel Ansah, Mychal Kendricks, Quinten Jefferson, and Nazair Jones. Does Adams improve their situation? Yes. But did they get the value expected from two 1sts, a 3rd, and a starting player? No. The Seahawks went All-In at a position that was pretty good to start with. Adams is a truly elite football player. Still, he can only cover one player. The Seahawks simply do not have the pass rush this year to exploit his true potential. Their defense is better, but not a top-10 by any means.
In fact, it was their offensive line is where they were hit hard in free agency. The Seahawks lost tackle George Fant, guard D.J. Fluker, and tackle Germain Ifedi to free agency. Some see Adams as a huge upgrade over last year. But realistically, part of adding him merely compensates for the loss of Clowney, who was a true unsung hero of that defense last year. Meanwhile, the Seahawks transition on both offense and defense to new faces will be very complicated due to such a short “how do you do” period this year.
For a team aiming to win it all, they’ve chosen a really bad year to abandon continuity and roll the dice on a complete roster makeover. Will it pan out? I don’t think it translates into nearly as many wins as so many are throwing at the Seahawks right now. In fact, this may merely ensure that the team does not fall below .500. In the end, the big winners of this blockbuster trade in 2020? The LA Rams.