The Rams have three of the top 20 (or top 18 if we’re being precise) free agents per the rankings. S Lamarcus Joyner comes in at #8 overall with CB Trumaine Johnson at #14 and WR Sammy Watkins at #18. No other team in the NFL is close to having a trio ranked so highly. While Johnson is expected to leave when the market opens following the Rams’ trade for CB Marcus Peters, there’s no certainty regarding either Joyner or Watkins. While the use of a franchise tag has reportedly been investigated as an option for either, a decision on the tag doesn’t have to be made until March 6.
As for the rest of the list, slot CB Nickell Robey-Coleman comes in at #46. NRC came over on an inexpensive one-year deal that he likely outplayed. I think the question is if the Rams have room for a multi-year deal for him. Down at #82 is OLB Connor Barwin. He too was on a one-year deal albeit much more expensive. With a severe roster need at OLB, I’m not sure he makes sense on the field for the Rams moving forward. He does though bring a strong veteran presence to the defense, and I know he’s a valued teammate off the field.
MID-READ BREAKING NEWS, FOLKS
As I was writing this, I saw over at NFL.com they published their top 101 free agents. They’ve got Watkins at #8 with a Tru-Joyner duo at #13 & #14, respectively. DE Dominique Easley comes in at #66. I know he’s a bit of a forgotten quantity having missed all of the 2017 season due to an ACL injury he suffered in training camp, but he just turned 26. A former first-round pick, Easley isn’t lacking for native talent. Have to wonder if he can get back on the field and make the most of that talent moving forward though. Huge upside signing, but a clear risk. C John Sullivan comes in at #75. While he put in a strong season, he’ll be 33 in August. Not sure what the market is for a 33-year old center outside of the Rams.
The market opens two weeks from Wednesday. Stay tuned.