The 2018 NFL free agency period is drawing near and the Los Angeles Rams have some important decisions to make in free agency. What players should Rams GM Les Snead retain or look for via free agency? Here are some options:
1. Morgan Burnett – Green Bay Packers
The eight-year NFL veteran has played his entire career with the Packers. However, Burnett has been “very excited” about the prospect of being a free agent. He was the Packers’ best defensive player on a defense that struggled throughout the 2017 season. If the Rams are unable to re-sign Lamarcus Joyner or fail to get another top line safety, Burnett may be available at a discount. Burnett recorded 68 tackles and a forced fumble in 12 games for Green Bay last season.
2. Kenny Vaccaro – New Orleans Saints
Kenny Vaccaro finally began to show glimpses of the player he could be as a keystone on a winning ball club. Vaccaro recorded 60 total tackles with one fumble return and three interceptions for the Saints last season. With the Saints looking to add depth by through the draft and/or free agency at a discounted price, Vaccaro may be available for the Rams to pick up. He played with a base salary of $5.67 million in 2017.
3. Tre Boston – Los Angeles Chargers
The Carolina Panthers cut Boston a year ago, and the Chargers swooped and signed him to a one-year deal. Boston took advantage of the situation and saved his career. Boston played in all but eight snaps last season; his 79 tackles in ’17 were a career-high. Boston also tied for fifth in the NFL with five interceptions last season. If the Rams are looking to land a free agent that still has his best years ahead of him, and at a discounted price, Tre Boston may be a great fit.
Of course, the Rams could bring back two of their safeties from last season:
4. Cody Davis
Davis was an integral part of the Rams’ defensive rotation before landing on injured reserve in Week 6 due to a quad injury. In five-plus games, Davis compiled 22 tackles and an interception. If he recovers well, Davis should be a solid option for any team needing a well-rounded safety. Davis made $1.1 million in 2017.
5. Lamarcus Joyner
The Rams are indicating that they will bring back LaMarcus Joyner; albeit via the franchise tag option, according to Kevin Patra from NFL.com. Joyner was a key element in Wade Phillips’ defensive scheme. The $11.3 million dollar price will be a steep one, but the Rams will lock up a player with versatility at both the safety and cornerback position. Joyner recorded three interceptions and 49 tackles in 2017.
Sources: Kevain Patra, NFL.com, overthecap.com, Charean Williams, profootballtalk.com, Mike Triplett, ESPN.com, James Parks, 247sports.com, Brad Taningco, clutchpoints.com, spotrac.com