It would have been easy for the Rams to aim their checkbook at one of the many young, playmaking, position players littering early Free Agency. The main knock on the Rams in recent history, has been their failure to produce much in the way of offense, while their defense consistently keeps opponents in check.
As of late, the Rams young weapons have failed to produce up to expectations and fans have placed the blame firmly on the offensive line. After, Todd Gurley started out his in career in 2015 on a record pace, defenses started shifting their attention toward him and basically shut him down.
To start out 2016, the Rams were supposedly using Gurley as a decoy in play -action to lure defenses in to allow their passing game to attack the edges. After getting shut out in the first game by the 49ers, the strategy seemed to work as the Rams ground out a three game winning streak. However, defenses adjusted once again and the Rams only won one more game the rest of the way.
It would make sense then to focus on the offensive line to open free agency this year. However, it may confuse fans a bit that the 6-foot-7, 335 pound lineman, would be a pass blocking left tackle, instead of a road grading guard. Since the one star on your team is running back who needs large holes in order to work magic, it would seem to make more sense to focus on the rush game. The passing game has very little in the way of options and even less true experience to build upon.
The Rams must have seen something the rest of us didn’t, because they seem to have decided the opposite could be true. Even more surprising, they seem to think they can win now. At thirty-five years old, Whitworth seems to have enough left in the tank for a season or two but it’s hard to envision him going much past that. Especially at the level the Rams seem to expect him to by giving him $36 million over three years, with $15 million guaranteed.
That seems to me like a massive investment for a team who doesn’t even know who their quarterback is going to be, and who doesn’t have the picks necessary to select a top-end receiver or tight end in the upcoming draft.