LA Rams dodged a bullet by avoiding this slam-dunk trade scenario

Los Angeles Rams Minicamp, Sean McVay
Los Angeles Rams Minicamp, Sean McVay / Jayne Kamin-Oncea/GettyImages

When the LA Rams football team sat down to begin strategizing how to restock, and improve, the team for the 2024 NFL season, the team quickly learned that they had fallen down the elevator shaft through the confirmed reports that All-Pro defensive lineman Aaron Donald had opted to retire from the NFL instead of returning for his 11th NFL season.

As the dust was settling on that seismic news, the Philadelphia Eagles were experiencing a bit of roster upheaval of their own. Defensive end Hassan Reddick, a player entering his contract year on the Eagles' defense, sought progress on an extension, or permission to seek a trade to a team that would be open to an extension:

Since the Rams were shopping for defensive help as the Eagles were seeking a trade partner for Hassan Reddick, I put two and two together and created a trade scenario for the Rams to acquire him from the Eagles that was clearly way overpriced for what Hassan Reddick would ultimately net from the New York Jets (see slide 4 of the linked article).

The Eagles ended up trading Reddick to the Jets for a 2026 Round 3 pick (conditionally upgraded to a Round 2 pick). At the time, the price paid by the Jets for the seven-year veteran edge rusher seemed a bit of a bargain. After all, Reddick averaged 55 tackles and 13 quarterback sacks over each of the past four seasons. And despite such lofty numbers, Reddick would cost the Jets (or any team that acquired him) just $15 million against their 2024 NFL salary cap.

But there was a bit of a complication after all. The same motivation for a new contract extension was not limited to the Eagles exclusively, but to any NFL team that he would ultimately play for. And that 'no extension, no appearance,' ultimatum has gotten Reddick off to a poor start with his new team:

While I certainly understand Reddick's position, and his insistence to hold his participation for ransom to ensure that the New York Jets begin negotiations in good faith, he certainly must understand that he needs to give them a sample of what they are getting in him as an NFL veteran pass rusher as well.

Get the coaching staff on his side, then threaten to pull the plug.

So why do I believe that the LA Rams dodged a bullet? Well, the Rams are not exactly known for driving a hard bargain in a trade with another team. If the Rams had wanted to acquire Hasson Reddick, they almost certainly would have placed a 2024 Round 3 pick on the table, picks that were used to acquire RB Blake Corum and DB Kamren Kinchens, two players who appear to have solid and potential for the Rams this season.

Perhaps more crippling would be the attempt to negotiate an extensive with Hasson Reddick and his agent while trying to install a new defensive scheme of DC Chris Shula. Not showing up for OTAs, while a veteran player's right, sets the stage for a less than optimal season. Had the Rams added Reddick, they would have almost certainly needed his participation to learn the Rams defense and set an example for the younger players on the roster.

Reddick wants to get paid, and I get that. But the Rams are trying to foster a culture that attracts players who love the game and who understand that lucrative contracts will follow suit.Hasson Reddick may dominate the NFL in 2024, but holding out for a new contract is not the message that the Rams need in the locker room right now.

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