When and if NFL free agency resumes, St. Louis Rams offensive lineman Adam Goldberg will be ready. Goldberg dropped Joe Linta, his previous agent, this month and replaced him with one of the biggest names in NFL representation, Drew Rosenhaus. Rosenhaus will represent Goldberg, an unrestricted free agent, when he starts looking for a new deal as soon as this lockout mess gets fixed.
The Rams re-signed Goldberg to a two-year deal worth $1.8 million in March of 2009. He was coming off a 2008 season in which he started 6 games at guard and tackle. In the two years since, he's started 30 of 32 games for the Rams, getting all 16 starts at right guard last year. He was mostly a right tackle in 2009.
Starting two seasons in a row and possessing the ability to play anywhere but center on the offense line means a bigger contract is definitely in his future. Hiring Rosenhaus to be his agent is a smart move. Goldberg could be in high demand with his skill set, especially with teams likely to overpay for veterans in the rush to get on the field. Goldberg turns 31 in August. He's not young, but should have some mileage left.
Personally, I'd like to see his stick with the Rams. There's value in a guy who can play four positions along the offensive line, and I think he's a better tackle than he is a guard. However, the Rams have their tackles, and whether or not he fits into the plans as their starting guard again this year remains to be seen. They probably need to get a better run blocker, but there were questions about C Jason Brown's play last season as the interior line struggled to open holes as wide as they used to for Steven Jackson.
But if Goldberg wants a guaranteed starting job, he can probably find one. And that could make it pricey for the Rams to try and keep him as a fifth lineman. Last year, the Texans signed free agent G/C Wade Smith to a four-year, $12 million deal. If teams see him as a tackle, that could really up the price tag. Green Bay re-signed a 34-year-old Chad Clifton to a three-year deal worth $20 million.
Goldberg has been working out with the Rams at informal player organized workouts. Prior to the well-publicized practices last week, he and most of the offensive linemen got together at a local training facility to work. The guy puts in his time, and has value as a team leader.
There's been lots and lots of talk about John Greco as a potential answer for the Rams, after he played in a time share for part of the season last year, with success. Greco, a RFA, received an original round tender, third round, from the Rams. The 2008 draft pick will be a RFA with whatever rules the NFL goes with for free agency. It's good insurance, and it might be exactly that if Goldberg gets a deal somewhere else.