What ever happened to thinking big? Old and in the way wide receivers get all the ink lately, from Plaxico Burress to Randy Moss. For the St. Louis Rams or any team, bringing in either one would be tinkering around the edges, at best, assuming either of them have anything left in the tank. For those who want to think big, here's something to whet your appetite. The Vikings offensive coordinator isn't envisioning an offense with WR Sidney Rice in the plans. Granted it's a stretch, but no more of a stretch than any of the other wide receiver talk.
Rice is ticketed fro free agency. Which kind of free agency depends entirely on what happens with the NFL labor situation. Under the 2010, i.e. no cap, rules for free agency, Rice is a restricted free agent, with just four years experience. Right now, the football world is flush with optimism as players and owners continue work on a deal. If that deal gets done, free agency as we know it might return, allowing teams to spend themselves silly on four-year unrestricted free agents. Enter Sidney Rice.
Rice would be the most coveted free agent wide receiver on the market. Even if the Chargers revoke the franchise tag for Vincent Jackson (unlikely), Rice will still be one of the top receivers on the market under the four-year rules. At 24, he has a bright future ahead of him. He is, however, coming off a hip injury, but is said to be back at full strength. With just one outstanding season under his belt, Rice has much left to prove.
For all their needs left to fill, none really give the Rams the potential to make a big splash or represent positions given high valuation by this coaching staff, e.g. outside linebacker, defensive tackle. Bringing in a Burress, a Moss or Ochocinco isn't going to have a dramatic impact on this offense. In the best case scenario, i.e. they can still contribute, those players would just replace one of the younger, untested horses in the stable. Rice is different.
Crazy talk? Probably. It is worth pointing out that earlier this spring there were reports of the Rams having interest in Rice. And for all the grumbling last year about Devaney's tight fisted approach to a barren free agent market, this front office has shown a willingness to make those big splashes. They did it with Jason Brown at center, and they were reported to have an agreement in place with Vincent Jackson last year, only to be rebuffed by the Chargers' outlandish trade requirements.
So, the next time you hear about some possibility of tweaking the roster with an aging receiver with almost as many question marks as the young receivers currently on board, buck the trend. Know that the Rams can do better.