If the Rams pause in 2023, could 2024 mean landing USC QB Caleb Williams?
Rams reset for 2024
If the LA Rams were focused on getting back to the NFL Playoffs in 2023, would the team be so willing to part ways with defensive stars who clearly fit the 'win now,' timeline? Perhaps. But the truth of the matter is that the LA Rams GM Les Snead alluded to the Rams pivoting to a new strategy this offseason.
“We’re probably going to have to, let’s call it, not press the gas as much and pay a little bit of the debt that we’ve accumulated . . . All things are in play." - per Rams GM Les Snead via the LA Times.
“We’re very well aware that some of our core players, right, are in their primes and are getting closer to the twilight of their primes,” he said. “But that does not mean, right, when you’re a player like that in your prime that you’re still not very productive and can be very successful.”
You can check out Les Snead's press conference below:
It's cleat that the LA Rams have a new strategy. What does that mean for 2023? Or perhaps we should ask what does that mean for both 2023 and 2024?
Rams 2023 could be another frustrating season
"Not pressing on the gas as much" is a curious choice of terms. Les Snead is a brilliant man, and he weighs his words carefully. I don't think that he was referring to Sean McVay or even the LA Rams coaching staff. What if he was relaying the fact that the LA Rams were willing to reset in 2023. Could the Rams pause on their drive to win Super Bowls and focus on rebuilding the Rams infrastructure. In short, the Rams may be focusing more on building a stronger foundation for the team going forward.
Does that mean outright tanking? Not at all. It simply means that the LA Rams recognize that they cannot sustain their current trajectory. Their success was buoyed, not on the play of elite NFL players, but on the myriad of young NFL players who outplayed their rookie contracts and were left to find FMV (fair market value) compensation in the NFL Free Agent market. Of course, by doing so, that triggers the algorithm for award compensatory NFL Draft picks, which starts the cycle all over again.
We had addressed that Les Snead press conference in the past. But now, as we begin to see the Rams' plan for 2023 placed into action, it appears that the team is more than willing to sacrifice key veteran contributors in the interest of building a stronger team for the future.
The LA Rams own their first round draft pick in the 2024 NFL Draft. If the Rams finish poorly in 2023, their 2024 NFL Draft pick could land a new franchise quarterback, perhaps even USC QB Caleb Williams? Well, Williams is already projected to be a Top-5 prospect in the 2024 NFL Draft. But the Rams ended with the sixth-overall draft pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, a pick that conveyed to the Detroit Lions. Could Caleb Williams be their target in the 2024 NFL Draft?