The Rams certainly bolstered the team which ultimately won the Super Bowl with their midseason moves last year. They are once again being looked at as potential buyers in the 2022 trade market, but appear unlikely to make major additions in the coming days.
The name most closely linked with the team has been Texans wideout Brandin Cooks. The 29-year-old spent two years in Los Angeles, after the Rams traded a first-round pick to the Patriots to acquire him in 2018. He posted a career-high 1,204 receiving yards in the regular season that year, playing a large role in the team’s postseason run to the Super Bowl as well. His numbers dropped off considerably the following year, and he was then dealt to Houston.
Over the past two years with the Texans, Cooks has proven himself to still be one of the top vertical threats in the league (2,187 yards, 12 touchdowns). With Houston residing in the basement of the AFC, though, the Oregon State product also represents a logical trade candidate. He is reportedly willing to lower his 2023 salary (currently a fully-guaranteed $18MM) to facilitate a move back to Los Angeles.
Peter King of NBC Sports notes that the Rams are indeed a candidate to add a speed receiver such as Cooks (provided the financial burden of taking on his contract is lessened). Notably, though, King adds that a move to upgrade the WR room could involve the Rams trading away Allen Robinson. A free agent signing from March, the 29-year-old joined Los Angeles on a three-year, $46.5MM deal. Seen as a Robert Woods replacement to complement Cooper Kupp, Robinson has yet to eclipse 63 yards in a game so far and has scored just two touchdowns.
Elsewhere on offense, King reports that the Rams have little-to-no interest in two other players who could be on the move today or tomorrow: Texans left tackle Laremy Tunsil and Browns running back Kareem Hunt. Both positions have emerged as sore spots for Los Angeles this season; Joe Noteboom is out for the season with a torn Achilles, while Cam Akers has fallen out of favor with head coach Sean McVay.
Tunsil could shore up the team’s pass protection, though a 2022 restructure of his deal leaves him with a prohibitive cap hit of over $35MM next year. Hunt, meanwhile, could reportedly be had for a fourth-round pick as he is set to hit free agency in March.
The Rams currently have just under $5MM in cap space, so a deal of some kind could be coming soon. Outside of a reunion with Cooks, however, the defending champions could have a much quieter trade deadline than last season.