Justin Houston time
Another veteran outside linebacker who still has enough left in his tank to offer a rotational role for the Rams defense is OLB Justin Houston. An All-Pro with the Kansas City Chiefs, he brings immediate credibility to the locker room (much like Von Miller did), while giving all of the young defenders on the roster a mentor.
And guess what? Houston is another 11-year veteran, albeit he has played rather productively for three different NFL teams. His most recent chapter was as an edge rusher for the Baltimore Ravens. In his last gig, he played 579 defensive snaps for the Baltimore Ravens, getting 34 tackles and 4.5 quarterback sacks.
Like so many other veterans mentioned, there is a certain element of quiet no-panic tone with veterans in the locker room, particularly one with an abundance of young players. That certainly describes the LA Rams linebacker status right now.
Standing 6-foot-3 and weighing 270-pounds, Houston gives a versatile platform to use in defenses, having played both a 4-3 defensive end and a 3-4 outside linebacker. That type of expertise could allow the Rams to send the pass rush from unexpected places, and drop Houston into coverages. Remember, not every signing needs to be a home run All-Pro. Sometimes, getting a player who can absorb snaps and still make plays is enough.
I haven’t explored Arden Key (the FA market is too hot for him) nor Jadeveon Clowney (the Cleveland Browns are pushing hard to re-sign him). But these are eight crazy options for the LA Rams to consider in reinforcing their defensive ranks in 2022. And sometimes, ideas like these are so crazy, they just might work.