The NFL world will descend upon Indianapolis this week for the annual NFL Scouting Combine. The incoming rookie class will go through interviews and on-field drills to make an impression on the league's 32 teams as one step in the lead up to the 2019 NFL Draft.
Additionally, many of the head coaches and general managers will address the media to talk about possible offseason moves and the state of their teams entering the new league year — including Sean McVay and Les Snead.
With that in mind, here are a few things to watch for at the NFL Combine.
HOW WILL THE RAMS APPROACH FREE AGENCY?
Snead and McVay will both hold press conferences on Thursday, and they are both sure to address how the Rams will approach the free agency period when it begins in mid-March. They, however, will almost certainly not detail exactly what the plans are.
Still, Los Angeles has a number of notable players who are about to be free agents — including left guard Rodger Saffold, defensive lineman Ndamukong Suh, safety Lamarcus Joyner, and outside linebacker Dante Fowler. The Combine is a time where all the coaches, GMs, and agents are in one place — which is why there could be progress on potentially bringing back those players, as conversations can take place face-to-face. Snead and McVay are also freely able to talk about the team's own free agents without tampering.
WILL THE RAMS USE THE FRANCHISE TAG?
Speaking of the Rams' own free agents, Los Angeles' brass will likely address whether or not the team may use the franchise tag in 2019. The Rams have tagged a player three years in a row — former cornerback Trumaine Johnson in 2016 and 2017, then Joyner last year. As a pending free agent, Joyner is once again a candidate for the tag. Fowler is potentially another candidate to be tagged. The deadline to designate a player for either the exclusive franchise tag, non-exclusive franchise tag, or the transition tag is March 5.
Check out photos of Los Angeles Rams players at the NFL Combine through the years. (Credit: Associated Press)
WHAT ABOUT NEW STAFF?
The Rams have reportedly made a few staff changes, and those coaches will all be in one place for the Combine. McVay's media availability on Thursday will be the first chance for him to publicly address the changes — including the additions and position shifts for those already on staff.
WHO WILL MAKE A BIG IMPRESSION?
At the end of the day, this is what the Combine is about — which of the incoming rookies can put their best foot forward to make the best impression on teams. While the on-field workout portion is important, the medical evaluations are also critical for the young players as they get ready to enter the league. Plus, the players will be able to speak with the coaches and personnel executives during official interviews at night. Each team gets to choose 60 players for a 15-minute interview over the course of the week, and that's the time where the club can get a bit of a feel for the individual.
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