In order to help maintain a competitive balance, the NFL offers what are called compensatory picks in the NFL Draft every year to support teams who lose talented players to free agency.
While the formula isn’t public (and I’d love to hear a legitimate, logical reason it isn’t), it essentially comes down to the quantity and quality of free agents a team loses compared to the same measures of free agents it signs based on salary, playing time and postseason honors. So picks are being offered for the 2018 NFL Draft based on the 2017 free agency period and how the players every team signed, and lost, fared. And simply put, the Rams got more in 2017 (a hell of a lot more, honestly) in free agency than they lost.
Based on those outcomes, here are the full list of compensatory picks included in the draft this year:
2018 NFL Draft Compensatory Picks
|4||33-133||Green Bay Packers|
|4||35-135||New York Giants|
|4||36-136||New England Patriots|
|5||35-172||Green Bay Packers|
|5||37-174||Green Bay Packers|
|6||33-207||Green Bay Packers|
|6||35-209||Kansas City Chiefs|
|7||33-251||Los Angeles Chargers|
|7||37-255||Tampa Bay Buccaneers|
Comp picks can change the fortunes of teams. This year’s list gives four picks to the Cincinnati Bengals, Dallas Cowboys, Green Bay Packers and Oakland Raiders. The Rams’ NFC West rival Arizona Cardinals got three comp picks along with the Houston Texans. The only other team getting more than one comp pick is the Minnesota Vikings who made the NFC Championship with former Rams QBs Case Keenum and Sam Bradford on the roster.
Given the impact of the draft, comp picks are always of significant weight. That the Cards received a third-round pick for DE Calais Campbell wasn’t a surprise. But try to keep that in mind when whomever the Cardinals take with that pick hits the field against the Rams in 2018. Thems the breaks.
Moreover, the Rams could well be in the mix for some significant comp picks in the 2019 NFL Draft. With so many expiring contracts, the Rams are certain to let some players exit in free agency this offseason. That has the potential to create a wide crop of comp picks a year from now.
That being said as it stands...yeah, we got nothing. So be it.