Another Takkarist McKinley relocation is on tap. The veteran pass rusher, who had caught on with the Titans’ practice squad last week, is now L.A.-bound.
The Rams will sign McKinley off that Tennessee taxi squad, Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets. This move will reunite McKinley with Rams DC Raheem Morris, who formerly served as a Falcons assistant head coach and interim HC during McKinley’s time in Atlanta, and signal a return to Los Angeles. McKinley, 26, is a UCLA alum.
A former first-round pick, McKinley has bounced around the league since his Falcons stay ended during the 2020 season. He was claimed three times on waivers after that Falcons cut; the 49ers, Bengals and Raiders claimed him that year. The young edge defender landed with the Raiders, but an injury prevented him from playing any games.
Last year, McKinley caught on with the Browns, who used him mostly as a rotational player behind Myles Garrett and Jadeveon Clowney. Late in a 2.5-sack 2021 season, McKinley went down with an Achilles tear in late December. That took the five-year veteran out of the mix for several months, but interest picked up around training camp. Although the Titans lost Harold Landry to an ACL tear just before the season, they chose not to promote McKinley to their active roster to prevent this Rams poaching.
With Von Miller now in Buffalo, Leonard Floyd anchors the defending champions’ edge-rushing corps. Considerable uncertainty exists behind Floyd. The Rams have Justin Hollins and former third-round pick Terrell Lewis as their top non-Floyd options on the edge. While McKinley is far from a sure thing at this point in his career, which has taken a downturn since some late-2010s Falcons production, he has made 27 career starts and totaled 20 sacks. Thirteen of those came between the 2017 and ’18 seasons. Morris was on Atlanta’s staff throughout McKinley’s time with the team.
This has been a rather interesting, as far as practice squads go, day for the Titans’ P-squad. Prior to losing McKinley, Tennessee signed safety Andrew Adams off the Steelers’ taxi squad and added cornerback Terrance Mitchell off the Patriots’ 16-man squad.