It appears that the LA Rams have every intention of undoing what the team did in 2022, and perhaps much more. After all, the Rams front office pivoted from the disappointment of losing veteran OLB Von Miller to an exciting off-season strategy of bolstering both their defense with All-Pro veteran ILB Bobby Wagner and their offense with accomplished veteran wide receiver Allen Robinson.
But the team had outright released Wagner earlier in the offseason and is now heavily rumored to be fielding calls and engaged in trade talks over All-Pro defensive back Jalen Ramsey. But as we had pointed out from the moment the LA Rams released Bobby Wagner, the bread crumbs lead to a conclusion that the LA Rams believe the best strategy for their 2023 NFL season is to consolidate, infuse young talent into the roster, and regroup for a future playoff push. And so, we simply followed the breadcrumbs and concluded that the LA Rams could have five more unthinkable roster moves in store this off-season.
That list of five now has two boxes checked, as NFL Insider Tom Pelissero now reports on the Rams rumors that the team has given wide receiver Allen Robinson permission to seek a trade with a new team.
That means that the LA Rams will be in the market for another wide receiver in the 2023 NFL Draft. Great news, eh?
Rams draft strategy altered
For the record, our other three anticipated Rams roster moves include releasing OC Brian Allen, releasing defensive back Jordan Fuller, and trading swing tackle Joe Noteboom. While the Rams will likely still be on the hook for excessive salary cap dollars that can be pared by restructuring their contracts, these five moves reset the roster and purge players who either underperform their compensation or simply no longer have a role in the Rams roster.
With any trade scenario, you have the right to ask what is the right level of compensation. To do that, you have to rank how Allen Robinson ranks compared to other available free agent wide receivers. Per NFL Insider Ross Tucker, Robinson is hands down the best option available at the position.
What does that mean for the LA Rams? Well, more than you might think. Keep in mind that when the Rams traded for veteran OLB Von Miller, the Rams traded a second-round pick for the player, and a third round pick for the Denver Broncos to pre-pay the bulk of his NFL salary. So what is the compensation that a potential 1000+ yard receiver can generate? In my view, the Rams could expect to land up to a third-round pick simply to compensate for any arrangement to pre-pay Robinson's salary, and a fourth-round pick for the player himself.
NFL teams who should take the risk
Teams that come to mind who should be talking to the LA Rams right now include the Atlanta Falcons, Baltimore Ravens, Dallas Cowboys, New England Patriots, New York Giants, and the Tennessee Titans. Not only are these teams at or nearly at the level of competing in the 2023-24 NFL Playoffs, but they are all teams in dire need of bolstering their receiving corps.
Will a trade happen? If other NFL GMs truly have embraced the LA Rams mantra of taking risks, then the answer is a resounding yes. Veterans who have succeeded in the NFL do not often appear in the NFL's version of Etsy or E-Bay, and only the most nimble NFL front offices can act quickly enough to take advantage of these rare opportunities.
Why are the LA Rams divesting so rapidly? It's quite clear that the 2022 NFL season caught the entire organization by complete surprise. And so, the LA Rams are retreating to square one in order to strategically and systemically reassemble their roster to a brand new set of specifications. It was quite clear that the Rams invested in positional coaches who excel at coaching up, development, and communication. Now the team is redoing the roster in such a way as to insulate the immediate future from the simultaneous collapse of the season due to excessive injuries.
If you are discouraged by the sudden purge of veterans by the LA Rams front office, I offer this for your peace of mind. The Rams rebounded in 2020 after a disappointing 2019 NFL season. While the LA Rams may not compete in the NFL Playoffs at the end of the 2023 NFL season, I believe that this team will be entirely prepared to do so the following year.
The journey is the key. This is an NFL team in tne hands of GM Les Snead and HC Sean McVay, two NFL professionals who appeared in two Super Bowls within five seasons. Sometimes, all that is necessary is to kick back and enjoy the ride.