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Contract Conundrums: Do the Rams need to part ways with Joe Noteboom?

Two major surgeries in four years make Noteboom a concern

NFL-Carolina Panthers at Los Angeles Rams Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

In January, Les Snead spoke with the media about how the Los Angeles Rams are facing a remodel situation after their attempt to “run it back” failed. Snead was sure to emphasize that the Rams remodel approach was not a rebuild, but that they would have to pay off some debt that they racked up over the last few seasons in pursuit of winning a Lombardi Trophy.

Over the next month and a half, Les Snead and Tony Pastoors will spearhead the Rams front office approach in finding the best way to remodel the roster despite restrictions in cap space and no first round pick in this year’s draft.

The best way for the Rams to remodel their roster will be to find cap saving moves through the release, trade, and restructuring of contracts. Some players may require some advanced methodology to conserve cap space, while others may be more straightforward.

Player contracts revisited this offseason…

Cooper Kupp, WR

Allen Robinson, WR

Tyler Higbee, TE

Contract Conundrum #4: Joe Noteboom, LT

In 2023, Joe Noteboom will earn a base salary of $8,500,000, while carrying a cap hit of $15,500,000.

Current contract: Three years $40.0 million

Joe Noteboom presents another unique challenge for the Los Angeles this offseason. Noteboom has never completed a season as a starter after playing in the NFL for five years. As a rookie, Noteboom took a backseat to Andrew Whitworth. In 2019, Noteboom started the season as LA’s left guard but he tore his ACL and MCL in Week 6 against the San Francico 49ers. In 2020 and 2021 he continued to backup Whitworth, playing in a few stretches when Whitworth missed a small handful of games. In 2022, Noteboom finally earned the starting job after Whitworth’s retirement. However, once again, disaster struck in Week 6 versus the Carolina Panthers when Noteboom tore his achilles tendon.

After two significant season-ending injuries, it's time for the LA Rams to decide whether Noteboom is an injury-prone player and pivot to AJ Jackson or a rookie OR if he can develop into the future left tackle they envisioned when they selected him in 2018. Noteboom’s $15.5 cap hit in 2023 is a pricey investment for unproven player. However, the Rams offensive line is thin across the board.

Joe Noteboom (Over the Cap)

Year Age Base Salary Prorated Bonus Roster Bonus Guaranteed Salary Cap Number Cap % Dead Money (pre-June 1 release) Cap Savings (pre-June 1 release)
Year Age Base Salary Prorated Bonus Roster Bonus Guaranteed Salary Cap Number Cap % Dead Money (pre-June 1 release) Cap Savings (pre-June 1 release)
2023 28 $8,500,000 $2,000,000 $5,000,000 $5,000,000 $15,500,000 6.90% $7,000,000 $8,500,000
2024 29 $10,000,000 $2,000,000 $5,000,000 $0 $17,000,000 6.60% $2,000,000 $15,000,000
2025 30 Void $2,000,000 Void Void $4,000,000 1.40% $2,000,000 $2,000,000
2026 31 Void $2,000,000 Void Void $0 0.00% $2,000,000 -$2,000,000

If LA moves on from Noteboom, they will only have AJ Jackson, Logan Bruss, Tremayne Anchrum, Brian Allen, Rob Havenstein, and Chandler Brewer under contract. Allen and Havenstein would be the only players with substantial playing time.

Los Angeles would only save $2.5 million with a pre-June 1 release. A post-June 1 release would save $8.5 million. If they can find a trade partner, a pre-June 1 and post-June 1 deal would save $7.5 and $13.5 million respectively.

Finding a trade partner will be easier said than done, but free agency only has a limited number of offensive linemen available. If a team is desperate to find a blindside protector, the Rams could put Noteboom on the trade block.

Decision: Nothing (Keep on roster)


What will the Rams do with Joe Noteboom’s contract?

This poll is closed

  • 9%
    pre-June 1 release
    (26 votes)
  • 32%
    post-June 1 release
    (88 votes)
  • 10%
    pre-June 1 trade
    (27 votes)
  • 23%
    post-June 1 trade
    (64 votes)
  • 23%
    Keep on roster to be starting LT
    (63 votes)
268 votes total Vote Now