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Commanders decline Chase Young’s option, is this a trade option for Rams?

Could the Rams trade for Chase Young after Commanders decline Chase Young’s option

Dallas Cowboys v Washington Commanders Photo by Jess Rapfogel/Getty Images

If there’s one team that is always active on the trade market, it’s the Los Angeles Rams. Despite coming off of a 5-12 season and not seen as a top contender in 2023, Les Snead will be looking at all options for the Rams to make a push for a Super Bowl in 2024.

One name that could be worth keeping an eye on is Washington Commanders edge rusher Chase Young. The Commanders selected Young second overall in 2020. On Wednesday, Washington opted not to pick up the 24-year old’s fifth-year option according to The Washington Post’s, Nicki Jhabvala.

This has been the mold for the Rams on defense over the last five years. In May of 2018, the Jacksonville Jaguars opted to decline Dante Fowler Jr.’s fifth-year option. The Rams traded for Fowler for a third and fifth-round pick later that season.

While the Jaguars did pick up the fifth-year option for Jalen Ramsey, the Rams still managed to trade for him midseason.

Leonard Floyd had his fifth-year option picked up by the Chicago Bears, but once he hit free agency, the Rams signed him to a one-year deal. Last season at the trade deadline, the Rams offered two first-round picks to the Carolina Panthers for Brian Burns.

Young was the 2020 Defensive Rookie of the Year and made the Pro Bowl. He had 7.5 sacks as a rookie, but has just 1.5 since. He tore his ACL in 2021 and didn’t return until Week 16 last season.

There certainly is some risk with Young given his injury history with the ACL, but the talent and potential are there. Similar to Fowler, this could be an opportunity for the Rams to buy low and then bring him back on a one or two-year deal following the season.

The Rams would likely have to give up more than a third and fifth-round pick given Young’s talent. With that said, it is a move that fits into their current team build. As mentioned, Young is still just 24-years old. The former second overall pick would give the Rams a young defensive piece to build around as they start to mold the new era and prepare for a life without Aaron Donald.

Depending on how Young starts the 2023 season, he could be a hot name at the trade deadline. If that is the case, don’t be surprised if Les Snead is on the phone making calls.