In reading about more “Jamal Adams wants to be trade if he doesn’t get a new deal” rumors, I immediately jumped to the question of “Could the Rams get involved?” and was of course immediately rebuffed. Obviously LA can’t afford to be taking on new veteran players, especially ones who want new contracts — and the Rams have yet to extend the last premier defensive back for whom they traded.
Yet I was still drawn to OvertheCap.com to see the list of teams, ordered by cap space, to assess which franchises might have the means to trade for Adams. As expected, the Rams ranked 32nd in cap space at just over $500,000. The Atlanta Falcons and New England Patriots sit just ahead of LA at roughly $1 million in cap space each.
The Cleveland Browns have the most cap space right now: $38 million.
Luckily for the Rams things do brighten up considerably in 2021. As of right now, their $42 million in cap space for next season (estimated of course) ranks 18th. It could be worse: The New Orleans Saints’ 2021 cap space is -$34 million and the Philadelphia Eagles is -$50 million. It is also possible that the complications in the 2020 season due to the coronavirus pandemic could have serious implications for future salary caps and salaries in any case.
Los Angeles is of course also hamstrung in deals by not having a first round pick because of the aforementioned DB trade and some of that $42 million should be going to Jalen Ramsey.
However, one team that I think has interestingly not been as criticized for their signings and moves is the Dallas Cowboys but I could see them being in a precarious situation in the near future. Demarcus Lawrence wasn’t as dominant last season and they are committed to paying him over $21 million each of the next two years; they are committed to Ezekiel Elliott for the next three years at high salaries for any running back; they’ve got $50 million per year going into only four members of the o-line over the next two years; and they’re paying Amari Cooper $22 million in 2021, all of which makes it very hard to see how they can afford Dak Prescott too.
All of which is to say that LA could be in a tough position today but these things can turnaround quickly year to year.
As to Adams, best possible news for the Rams right now may be that the New York Jets trade Adams to any team in the AFC except for the Patriots, Miami Dolphins, and Buffalo Bills. That shouldn’t be a problem since the Jets would be unlikely to trade him within the division. Then if he went to any of the other 12 AFC teams, the Rams wouldn’t be seeing a defense with Adams next season unless it was in the Super Bowl. I would expect that the Jets simply extend Adams and this all blows over.