The Rams helped put an end to the Jalen Ramsey saga when they traded two first-round picks and a fourth-rounder to the Jaguars for the disgruntled star earlier this week. Ramsey is expected to suit up for his new club today — his back seems to have healed up quite nicely after the trade was announced — and we have a great deal of Ramsey-related notes to pass along:
- The Eagles were considered a front-runner in the Ramsey sweepstakes, and as Adam Schefter of ESPN.com reports, Philadelphia did make a legitimate effort to land the soon-to-be 25-year-old All-Pro. Schefter says the Eagles offered a first- and second-round choice to the Jaguars for Ramsey, and they thought they would be able to complete a deal. But when they were outbid by the Rams, the Eagles did not increase their offer, largely because they expect to have four defensive backs returning from injury in the next two weeks.
- The back injury that reportedly kept Ramsey out of the Jaguars‘ lineup for the past several games was widely thought to be an injury of convenience, and Jags owner Shad Khan steadfastly refused to give in to Ramsey’s trade demands (for a while). But as Schefter writes in a separate piece, three doctors cleared Ramsey to return from his injury, and Khan believed the “heart-to-heart” he had with Ramsey had helped to turn the tide. Khan thought Ramsey would play in last week’s game against the Saints, but when he didn’t, that was the final straw. Khan then gave his front office the green light to strike a trade.
- Ramsey, in an interview with ESPN’s Ryan Clark on Sunday morning, said his negative feelings towards the Jaguars this year started when head coach Doug Marrone did not trust him enough to challenge a completed pass during the team’s loss to the Texans that Ramsey insisted was incomplete. Ramsey said a meeting with unnamed Jacksonville execs after that game also prompted him to call his agent and request a trade (Twitter links via veteran NFL reporter Ed Werder).
- In yet another Ramsey piece, Schefter details the series of events that led to the trade to LA. It started with the Rams offering Marcus Peters to the Browns for guard Joel Bitonio. Cleveland countered with an Austin Corbett-for-draft pick offer that the Rams accepted. Los Angeles then offered Peters to the Ravens — another player in the Ramsey sweepstakes — and Baltimore was not only interested, but it wanted the deal to happen right away so it could have Peters for its key matchup with the Seahawks on Sunday. The 2020 fifth-rounder the Rams got back from the Ravens allowed them to add a 2021 fourth-rounder in their package to the Jaguars for Ramsey, which is what allowed the deal to get done.
- Rams‘ COO Kevin Demoff is one of those execs who is more willing to part with draft capital to acquire proven talent, a philosophical shift that has made for more exciting trade seasons in the NFL in recent years. Demoff said, via Ian Rapoport of NFL.com, “[w]e don’t value late first-rounders as much as we do proven players. It is a further crapshoot when you get to that point in the round.”
- Demoff refuted the notion that the Rams, losers of three straight, made the Ramsey trade out of desperation, pointing out that the team would have kept Peters if it was truly desperate. Instead, the Rams, who knew they were not going to re-sign Peters in the offseason, elected to get something for him while sending him to a club that will be able to get the most out of his talents. Of course, as noted above, it was the Peters trade that helped to facilitate the Ramsey deal.
- Rapoport says that the Rams are expected to work out a long-term deal with Ramsey in the offseason. The trade was obviously not contingent on having such a contract in place, though the topic was discussed. Schefter says Ramsey has promised he will not hold out if the two sides do not come to terms on an extension in 2020, though all bets are off if the Rams attempt to use the franchise tag on him in 2021. Interestingly, Schefter says the Rams could turn around and trade Ramsey this offseason if they feel they won’t ultimately be able to sign him to a long-term pact.