Rams Rumors

NFC Contract Details: Funchess, Blythe, Redskins, Cardinals

We’ve got a handful of contract details to pass along. We’ll start with the latest NFC notes, all via Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle on Twitter:

  • Devin Funchess, WR (Packers): One year, $2.5MM. Includes $3.75MM in receptions, receiving yards, touchdowns incentives.
  • Austin Blythe, OL (Rams): One year. Worth $3.9MM, including $3.5MM guaranteed. $950K signing bonus, $2.95MM salary (of which $2.55MM is guaranteed).
  • Peyton Barber, RB (Redskins): Two year, $3MM. Includes $600K signing bonus. Salaries: $910K (2020), $1.14MM (2021). $150K per-game maximum roster bonus in 2020, $199K+ per-game maximum roster bonus in 2021.
  • Nate Orchard, LB (Redskins): Re-signed. One-year, $1.047MM deal. Includes $137.5K signing bonus, $910K salary.
  • Seth Roberts, WR (Panthers): One year, $3.75MM. Includes $600K signing bonus, $3.1MM salary, $50K workout bonus.
  • Marcus Gilbert, OT (Cardinals): One year, $3.75MM. $1.05MM base salary (of which only $150K is guaranteed). Up to $2.7MM in playing time incentives.
  • Max Garcia, OL (Cardinals): Re-signed. One-year, $1.25MM deal, including $600K guaranteed. Up to $190K per-game maximum roster bonus, up to $1MM in playing time incentives.
  • Cameron Fleming, OL (Giants): Signed. One-year, $3.5MM deal (as opposed to previously-reported one-year, $4MM deal). Includes $2MM guaranteed. Up to $500K per-game roster bonus, up to $500K playing time incentives.
  • Kerry Hyder, DE (49ers): One year. $1.5MM, including $550K guaranteed. Up to $250K in per-game roster bonus.

Brandin Cooks Not On Trade Block?

The Rams have made some notable changes this offseason, with Todd Gurley‘s release being the biggest move from a team with some major questions atop its payroll. Brandin Cooks represents one of the big contracts on Los Angeles’ cap sheet, and a report earlier this month indicated the team was shopping him.

That no longer appears to be the case. The Rams do not have Cooks on the trade block, Peter King of NBC Sports notes. Considering Cooks’ concussion-marred 2020 and $12MM in guarantees due this season, this makes sense. The Rams would not be expected to collect full value for the twice-traded wideout, who is signed through 2023.

Cooks’ 1,000-yard streak stopped at four. In a down year for the Rams’ offense, the 26-year-old target only produced 582 yards in 14 games. Cutting Cooks would not be a realistic move for the Rams, who already ate considerable dead money from the Gurley release. Were Cooks to be shopped, King lists the Eagles, Packers, Raiders or Redskins as potential suitors.

Los Angeles still has Cooks, Robert Woods and Cooper Kupp. Woods, however, has outplayed his five-year, $34MM contract and Kupp is going into a contract year. Neither is in Cooks’ NFL tax bracket, but both outplayed him last season. Each surpassed 1,100 receiving yards in 2019. The former Saints and Patriots wideout, however, totaled a career-high 1,204 receiving yards in 2018.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Michael Brockers Re-Signs With Rams; Ravens Deal Nixed

1:48pm: Brockers’ three-year deal carries a base value of $24MM and could be worth up to $31.5MM via incentives, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. A good chunk of the incentive package – $4.5MM – is based on realistic playing time milestones that he should bank, so long as he stays healthy. Brockers, as Rapoport notes, has not missed a game in the last three years.

9:24am: Michael Brockers isn’t going to the Ravens after all. On Friday, the Ravens announced that the deal is off. Then, Brockers did a U-Turn – he’ll return to the Rams on a three-year deal worth up to $31.5MM, as Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets

It’s a similar deal to his would-be Ravens contract, which was reported to be worth $30MM over the course of three years. However, it’s worth noting that the Ravens were set to give him $21MM fully guaranteed and the locked-in dollar amount of Brockers’ new Rams deal is not yet known.

Brockers was set to join forces with newcomer Calais Campbell and incumbent interior force Brandon Williams in Baltimore. Then, earlier this week, the Ravens got skittish about his medical situation. Unable to examine him with their own team doctors due to the coronavirus epidemic, they had Brockers examined by an outside doctor. The exam raised potential issues with Brockers’ ankle, the same one he injured late last year.

Even though he doesn’t have gaudy sack totals, Brockers has been a solid defender against the run for L.A. For the Rams, it’s a significant item crossed off their to-do list. The Ravens, meanwhile, are in a bit of a tough spot. Before deciding on Brockers, the Ravens were in the mix for Ndamukong Suh and other notable D-Lineman, but Suh and most of this year’s impact free agents are already spoken for.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Contract Details: Quinn, Whitworth, Harris, Lewis

Deals are coming in quickly, so we’ve compiled some important contract details below:

Cameron Fleming (Giants), One year, $4MM, according to Jordan Raanan of ESPN.

Chris Harris, (Chargers): Two years, $17MM, $7.5MM guaranteed, $2.5MM in 2020-21 incentives, per Mike Garafolo of NFL.com.

Dennis Kelly (Titans), Three years, $17.25MM, $8.75MM guaranteed, $4.75MM signing bonus; salaries 2020: $1.5MM (fully guaranteed), 2021: $4.5MM ($2.5MM guaranteed for injury at signing, fully guaranteed if on roster 5th day of 2021 league year); 2022: $5MM; $400k annual per-game roster bonus, $750K incentives available in 2021-22; $1MM escalator in base salary for 2021-22, according to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle.

Alex Lewis (Jets), Three years, $18.6MM, $5.6MM guaranteed, $2.5MM signing bonus, salaries 2020: $1.1MM (guaranteed), 2021: $5.8M, 2022: $6M; $2MM 2020 roster bonus guaranteed on 5th day of league year, $400k in annual per-game roster bonuses, according to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle.

Marcedes Lewis (Packers) One year, $2.25MM; $1.05MM signing bonus, salary 2020: $1.1MM, $9,375 per game active roster bonus, $750K playtime and playoffs incentives available, according to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle.

Robert Quinn, (Bears): Five years, $70MM, $30MM guaranteed, $3MM signing bonus; salaries 2020: $3MM (fully guaranteed), 2021: $11.5MM (fully guaranteed), 2022: $12.8MM, 2023: $13.9MM, 2024: $12.9MM; $12.5MM fully guaranteed roster bonus in 2020, $100k annual workout bonuses from 2021-2024, per Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk.

Andrew Whitworth, (Rams): Three years, $30MM, $12.5MM guaranteed, $5MM signing bonus; salaries 2020: $5MM (fully guaranteed), 2021: $7MM ($2.5MM guaranteed), 2022: $7.5MM; $2.5MM 2021 roster bonus guaranteed next week, $3MM 2022 roster bonus due six days before 2022 league year, $1.5MM annual incentives, $1.5MM base escalators in 2021-22, per Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle (Twitter links).
Nick Williams (Lions), Two year, $10MM, $4.9MM guaranteed, $2MM signing bonus; salaries 2020: $2.9MM (fully guaranteed), 2021: $4.1MM; $200k workout bonus in 2020, $400k in annual per-game roster bonuses available, according to NFL Insider Adam Caplan.

Rams To Release Clay Matthews

Todd Gurley isn’t the only Rams star on his way out. The Rams have released linebacker Clay Matthews, according to Mike Garafolo of NFL.com (on Twitter). 

[RELATED: Rams Cut Todd Gurley]

Matthews, 34 in May, wasn’t easy to let go. Last year, the veteran racked up eight sacks in 13 games (all starts), despite missing some time with a painful broken jaw.

Jaw aside, Matthews has been durable throughout his pro career. That’s part of what helped Matthews earned six Pro Bowl nods through his ten seasons in Green Bay and he seemed on pace for a seventh before that setback.

The Rams will have to find edge pressure elsewhere as they remake their entire defense. So far, they’ve watched Eric Weddle retire while Cory LittletonMichael Brockers and Dante Fowler have all departed in free agency. They also turned down their option on slot corner Nickell Robey-Coleman. Meanwhile, they’ve added a handful of players, including former first-rounder Leonard Floyd and A’Shawn Robinson.

Thanks to his re-emergence under Wade Phillips, Matthews figures to draw some degree of interest on the open market. Matthews, however, did not live up to the extension he signed with the Packers. He failed to produce a double-digit sack season from 2015-18, recording just 3.5 and 12 quarterback hits in 2018. Matthews managed just 11 QB hits last season.

While the former Pro Bowler’s career is winding down, he still has a chance to reach 100 sacks. The former Packers first-round pick is up to 91.5 for his career. Matthews getting there would make him the 35th player in NFL history to do so. The third-generation NFLer will need to find a third team to help him reach this milestone, however.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Rams Release RB Todd Gurley

The Rams shopped Todd Gurley in trades but now are making a major decision. They have released the All-Pro running back.

This move comes less than 15 minutes before Gurley would have been guaranteed $10.5MM. It will send the 25-year-old running back into free agency. The Rams will eat a staggering $20.15MM in dead money in total, though they’ll spread it out over two years via the post-June 1 designation (via Field Yates of ESPN.com). The Rams will also see $5.5MM in cap savings, starting on June 2.

Gurley’s four-year, $57.5MM contract reset the running back market in 2018, and the superstar all-purpose back was one of the NFL’s best players for most of the 2018 season. But a late-season knee injury ended up altering his career. Gurley has not looked like the same player, for the most part, since.

An explosive talent since coming to St. Louis in the 2015 first round, Gurley shook off an ACL tear he sustained while at Georgia to win offensive rookie of the year honors that season. His peak stretch occurred from 2017-18, when he totaled 40 touchdowns and nearly 4,000 scrimmage yards. Gurley resided as the centerpiece of Sean McVay‘s attack during the Rams’ resurgence over this time, finishing second in the 2017 MVP voting. But last season, his workload and per-touch averages plummeted.

Although Gurley played in 15 games last season, his per-carry average dropped from 4.9 to 3.8. A year after a 59-reception, 580-yard season, Gurley totaled just 31 catches and 207 yards in 2019. The Rams worked backup Malcolm Brown into the offense more, which followed Gurley’s sudden timeshare with C.J. Anderson in the 2018 playoffs. Brown and 2019 third-round pick Darrell Henderson now reside as the Rams’ top running backs.

Both McVay and Gurley danced around the topic of Gurley’s injury over the past year and change, but that matter will soon be another team’s to discuss. Gurley will not command the kind of money he received with the Rams ($21.9MM fully guaranteed) but will be a somewhat attractive commodity on the market given his production. However, the NFL’s COVID-19 policies figure to impede Gurley’s path to another team. Players are not allowed to visit teams, which will prevent other medical staffs from examining the talented back.

This marks another bad sign for high-end running back deals. Gurley resetting the market led to David Johnson, Le’Veon Bell and Ezekiel Elliott landing contracts averaging north of $13MM per season. The Johnson and Bell deals quickly became onerous for their respective franchises. With the talented 2017 running back class now extension-eligible, it will be interesting to see how teams proceed given the early returns from the new running back market.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Rams Shopping Brandin Cooks

This is breaking news. Please refresh for updates.

Brandin Cooks could be on the move. Again. The Rams have made the wide receiver available via trade, according to Jeff Howe of The Athletic (on Twitter). Meanwhile, they’re also shopping star running back Todd Gurley.

[RELATED: Rams Shopping Todd Gurley]

The Rams are looking to shed Cooks’ salary while recouping some draft capital. Despite his past accomplishments, it could be tough for them to find the right deal. Last year, Cooks had just 42 grabs for 583 yards and two touchdowns. Contrasted with his four straight seasons of 65/1,082/5, his trade value ain’t what it used to be.

If a deal comes together, it’ll likely happen in the next 24 hours. On Friday, Cooks is slated to lock in a guaranteed $5MM roster bonus. All in all, his contract takes him through 2023 with an upcoming cap hit of $16.8MM. A trade would lessen the blow, but still leave the Rams with a dead money charge.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Rams Discussing Todd Gurley Trade

This is breaking news. Please refresh for updates.

The Rams are in discussions about a possible trade involving Todd Gurley, PFT’s Mike Florio (via Twitter) hears. It’s not immediately clear which teams are in on the talks, but there are plenty of possible fits for the supremely talented running back. 

Of course, there are some complications involved in any Gurley trade. First, there’s his lingering knee injury, which has limited his effectiveness. There’s also the matter of his contract – Gurley is signed through 2023 thanks to his four-year, $57.5MM extension.

Gurley, 25, was the NFL’s offensive player of the year in 2017 and notched 40 touchdowns between ’17 and ’18. Last year, the two-time All-Pro averaged just 3.8 yards per carry and just 6.7 yards per reception. In total, he gained 1,064 yards last year, the lowest total of his career.

The notion of a Gurley trade was unthinkable just a few years ago. Now, after the Rams went 9-7, all options are on the table.

The Buccaneers – who have landed Tom Brady – could be one possibility for Gurley.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Rams Sign DT A’Shawn Robinson

After losing several key defensive players, the Rams are now adding to their core. NFL.com’s Tom Pelissero reports (via Twitter) that the team is signing defensive tackle A’Shawn Robinson. It’s a two-year deal worth $17MM.

The 2016 second-rounder had spent his entire career with the Lions. After starting all 16 games during the 2017 season, Robinson was limited to only 26 games (16 starts) over the past two years. Still, he combined for 89 tackles, 2.5 sacks, and two forced fumbles.

The Rams defense will look a whole lot different in 2020. Safety Eric Weddle retired, Cory LittletonMichael Brockers, and Dante Fowler have all departed in free agency, and the team declined their option on usual slot corner Nickell Robey-Coleman. So far, the organization has added former first-rounder Leonard Floyd and re-signed Austin Blythe.

They’ve also replaced defensive coordinator Wade Phillips with Brandon Staley, so it’s safe to say that side of the ball is getting a complete makeover after Sean McVay’s dissatisfaction with the previous structure became evident.