This offseason, theRams.com will be taking a look around the internet for the top Rams headlines of the day. Here's a look at what's out there for Monday, Feb. 20th about your Los Angeles Rams:
Should Rams franchise Sammy Watkins or Lamarcus Joyner?
Beginning on Tuesday, all 32 NFL clubs will have the opportunity to tag one player with either the franchise or transition tag. The tags allow a club to keep a potential free agent with a one-year, guaranteed contract — one that is in line with the highest paid players in the league. The deadline to apply a tag is on March 6.
The Rams currently have 14 players on track to be unrestricted free agents, including more than five starters from the 2017 season. And this week, ESPN.com writer Alden Gonzalez is taking a look at two of Los Angeles' upcoming free agents — wide receiver Sammy Watkins and safety Lamarcus Joyner — who could be potential candidates for a franchise or transition tag.
Take a look at the Los Angeles Rams set to be unrestricted and restricted free agents in 2018.
Projected price: $16.23M (franchise), $14.03M (transition)
Reason For:"The Rams gave up a 2018 second-round pick -- not to mention a strong cornerback in E.J. Gaines -- to obtain Watkins, which should be reason enough to give him more than one season to fit in... A multiyear extension could be risky because of his history of foot injuries, but the franchise tag could work out for both parties."
Reason Against:"Watkins' downfield presence helped open the middle of the field for Woods and Kupp, but Watkins himself finished with only 39 catches for 593 yards in 15 games...Simply put: Watkins didn't produce enough to warrant a $16 million-plus price tag for the 2018 season, especially with so many needs upcoming on defense."
Projected price: $11.08M (franchise), $9.50M (transition)
Reason For:"The Rams similarly can't afford to lose Joyner. Pro Football Focus made him the third-highest-graded safety in 2017, his first year transitioning away from slot corner. He's small -- listed at 5-foot-8, 190 pounds -- but he hits big and brings great ball skills."
Reason Against:"Franchising Joyner might mean running the risk of not bringing back Watkins. It also might mean not locking up Joyner long term, and the Rams have appeared willing to do that dating back to last offseason...In an ideal scenario, the Rams would agree to a long-term deal with Joyner before the start of free agency, on March 14, which would then allow them to use their franchise tag on Watkins if they so choose. But the ideal scenario hardly ever presents itself."
*Projected prices were provided by OvertheCap.com
Lowest Interception Rates When Under Pressure:
Quarterback Jared Goff had an impressive 2017 under first-year head coach Sean McVay. The second-year signal caller threw for 3,804 yards and 28 touchdowns, with just seven interceptions. According to Pro Football Focus, Goff had the lowest interception rate when under pressure this season, throwing just one interception on 152 attempts while under pressure.
His 0.7 percent interception rate came above other quarterbacks like Carson Wentz (0.8%), Case Keenum (1.1%) and Tom Brady (1.3%).
Rams Enjoying their Time in the Offseason:
The official start to the new league year (March 14) is just around the corner. But even with offseason workouts on the horizon, the Rams have still been taking full advantage of their time off. Check out what a few of your favorite players have been up to in the past week: