It’s that time of year where trade hypotheticals are going to dominate the news cycle with the NFL trade deadline getting closer. Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay said on Wednesday that he doesn’t see the team being active in trade conversations as they have in years past. However, that also doesn’t mean that if the right opportunity arose that they wouldn’t jump. The Rams don’t necessarily have the assets to make a splash move, but something more under the radar might be more attainable.
ESPN’s Bill Barnwell recently suggested 15 possible trades at the deadline. In one of those trades, Barnwell had the Rams trading for former Seattle Seahawks running back Rashaad Penny and giving up linebacker Troy Reeder in return.
Here’s what Barnwell had to say,
“The Penny era came and went without much fanfare in Philadelphia. The former Seahawks back averaged 5.7 yards per carry in Seattle and felt like a dream fit in Philadelphia, but he was a healthy scratch in Week 1. In Week 2, he committed a holding penalty that wiped away a touchdown pass to A.J. Brown and played one offensive snap afterward, and he hasn’t seen the field since...Using Penny to add defensive depth makes sense. Reeder is not going to cause Eagles fans to start climbing lampposts, but he’s a useful special teams player who started at inside linebacker for the Rams in 2020 and 2021...Penny would land as the Cam Akers replacement in Los Angeles, serving as a change-of-pace player and backup for Kyren Williams. Penny competed under former Rams pass game coordinator Shane Waldron during his time in Seattle, so Penny should already have some familiarity with the McVay offense.”
It wouldn’t be a surprise to see the Rams try and add a running back to complement Kyren Williams. They were reportedly one of the teams who called about Jonathan Taylor. Williams has been solid since taking over in Week 2. He’s currently graded as Pro Football Focus’ 13th best running back, ranks sixth in DYAR, and is third in overall success rate.
However, that doesn’t mean that the Los Angeles offense couldn’t use some explosiveness in their backfield. With the Seahawks, Penny had been one of the more explosive running backs in the NFL.
Rashaad Penny has been one of the more explosive running backs in the NFL over the last two seasons when healthy.— Next Gen Stats (@NextGenStats) March 14, 2023
Penny has averaged the most yards after contact (4.6) and rushing yards over expected (+1.8) among RB since 2021 (min. 100 carries).@pennyhendrixx | @Eagles https://t.co/OWHOzTZd9M pic.twitter.com/1L1oJY7p0h
Barnwell brings up the connection between McVay and Seahawks offensive coordinator Shane Waldron who had success with Penny. However, the Rams have also revamped their running scheme, adding more gap and power runs. The Seahawks are primarily a zone-running team whereas the Rams have called just 21 zone runs this season.
It’s also hard to see the Rams getting any value for Troy Reeder. Reeder has played solely on special teams this season. Most likely the Rams will be standing pat at the trade deadline, but hypotheticals like this are at least interesting to think about what could happen.