57. LOS ANGELES RAMS (11-7)
LAST SEASON: The Rams reached the playoffs for the third time in four consecutive winning seasons under coach Sean McVay, going 10-6 with the NFL’s No. 1 defense carrying an inconsistent offense. Aaron Donald won his third NFL Defensive Player of the Year award, and CB Jalen Ramsey also earned All-Pro honors. The Rams shrugged off significant late-season injury setbacks to earn an opening-round victory in Seattle before their season ended in Green Bay.
FREE AGENCY: Lost S John Johnson, CB Troy Hill, C Austin Blythe, RB Malcolm Brown, TE Gerald Everett, LS Jake McQuaide, DL Morgan Fox, WR Josh Reynolds, LB Samson Ebukam. Traded DT Michael Brockers. Acquired QB Matthew Stafford. Signed WR DeSean Jackson. Re-signed LB Leonard Floyd, CB Darious Williams.
THEY NEED: C, ILB, S, EDGE, DL.
THEY DON’T NEED: WR, QB, RB, OT.
POSSIBLE FIRST PICK: Oklahoma C Creed Humphrey, Wisconsin-Whitewater C-G Quinn Meinerz, Texas EDGE Joseph Ossai, Oregon S Jevon Holland.
OUTLOOK: Barring a hugely unlikely trade up, GM Les Snead won’t make a first-round pick for the fifth consecutive season. He also doesn’t have a first-round pick in 2022 or 2023. Yet Snead and McVay have built a championship-contending roster comprised largely of superstars and mid-round draft picks, and they’ll need to hit again on several areas of depth after LA was ravaged by free agent losses. Four defensive starters must be replaced, and rookies could be key backups on both sides of the ball as Stafford attempts to lead the Rams back to the Super Bowl. Most importantly, look for the Rams to draft a replacement starting center while adding contributors on the defensive line.
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