Free agency is filled with all kinds of players with varying amounts of notoriety. When your team signs someone on the far end of the spectrum, fans shouldn’t have to exert too much energy in finding out who their newest player is. But more often than not, your team is going to sign someone in the middle of the pack. Someone who you don’t hear about once a week on SportsCenter during the regular season.
In that spirit, I thought it would be a wonderful idea to have someone that has covered him over the last four years to help educate you all on your newest outside linebacker.
1.) For those who haven’t watched a ton of Bears games, what kind of player are Rams fans getting in Leonard Floyd?
I’ve always thought Floyd was a good football player. He’s improved against the run, his coverage is decent, his length can shrink quarterback’s windows, and he’s able to get some occasional pressure on the quarterback. But during his time in Chicago he hasn’t been able to finish with many sacks. I was hoping the Bears could have re-worked his deal to keep him in Chicago, but I understand why they had to let him go.
2.) If you were the Rams’ defensive coordinator, how would you utilize Floyd’s skill-set to get the most of him as a player?
The same way the Bears used him the last few years. He’s not a classic 3-4 edge rusher, so playing him as a strong side outside linebacker is probably the best way to go. His size and quickness makes him good when dropping into zone, and he is fast enough to stick with tight ends in coverage.
3.) Some believe Floyd still hasn’t been able to put it all together since being selected in the first round of the 2016 NFL Draft. What do you think has been his biggest obstacle in sustaining success and could a change of scenery do him well?
It’s all about his lack of sacks and draft position. The Bears traded up to get Floyd at ninth overall in 2016, and after a career high 7 sacks as a rookie, that number has decreased each season. Like I said earlier, he is a good football player, but trading up for a guy that hasn’t been able to figure out how to consistently rush the passer was a problem.
4. What kind of player are the Rams getting in Floyd off the field? What type of presence is he bringing to the locker room and his position group?
There were no off the field instances from Floyd during his four years in Chicago. He doesn’t have a boisterous personality and has always struck me as a hard hat-lunch pail type of guy.
5.) What is your favorite memory that involves Floyd?
I mentioned his lack of sacks (only 18.5 in 54 career games), but in the eight games against the Packers he racked up 7.5. Maybe his thing is rising to the occasion against division rivals?