Offensive tackle Trent Williams is the biggest name currently on the NFL trade block and the Los Angeles Rams would benefit greatly from his services.
The Los Angeles Rams‘ biggest need this offseason is improvements to the offensive line. The offensive line took a huge step back in 2019 and was a big reason why the Rams disappointed, missed the playoffs and finished with a 9-7 record.
The Rams were still good enough to be a playoff team, but the struggles on the offensive line made a direct impact on Jared Goff, who was not as bad as his doubters say he was but did have some games that cost the Rams a victory.
Goff is young and even if he has shown some concerning signs at times, he is a talented quarterback that with a good offensive line and weapons around him, is good enough to win the Super Bowl.
More from LA Sports Hub
- Lakers: 5 Players to Target Through Trades to make another championship run
- LA Chargers: Week 8 against Denver Broncos is a must-win
- LA Rams: Jared Goff wants to keep the Los Angeles title streak going
- Lakers Rumors: Los Angeles Clippers interested in Rajon Rondo
- LA Chargers: Justin Herbert wins AFC Rookie of the Month
That is why improving the offensive line this season. The problem for the Rams is that they do not have a first-round pick and do not have a lot of cap space, which limits their options.
This seemingly takes them out of the Trent Williams sweepstakes. Williams was given permission by the Washington Redskins to seek out a trade. Williams, 31, has been a Pro Bowler in each of the last seven seasons he played, although he did not play in 2019.
Because of his talent level and his $14.5 million cap hit, it might appear as if the Los Angeles Rams are not in the running whatsoever for Williams. They are, but it would have to take a particular type of trade for this to happen.
The Rams would have to swap one of their large contracts for the large contract of Williams. The only large contract worth flipping for the left tackle is wide receiver, Brandin Cooks.
There is already speculation that the Rams are going to ask Cooks to restructure his contract to help with the cap situation. Cooks signed a five-year, $81 million contract with a $16.8 million cap hit this season. The Rams have a potential out after this season but would carry over $13 million in dead cap.
Cooks is a great receiver and when he is healthy is a true number one receiver in the NFL. Cooks was banged up last season but that is not the reason why the Rams would look to trade him. For Los Angeles, it would give the team more long-term freedom, with the ability to spend either on the offensive line or re-sign Jalen Ramsey, or both.
The Rams would be swapping four years of Cooks for just one year of Williams, which is a great return for the Washington Redskins. The Redskins need wide receivers and Cooks, alongside Terry McLaurin, would give the Redskins a receiver corps that would make them competitive.
This would also prevent from the Rams having to send draft picks, although the Redskins could ask for a future sixth or seventh in the trade. Regardless, like the Panthers-Chargers swap from earlier in the week, both teams would be swapping big contracts to help areas of need.
Losing Cooks would be a blow to the receiving corps but they would be just fine without him. Jared Goff still has Robert Woods, Cooper Kupp and Tyler Higbee as above-average pass catchers. Josh Reynolds showed promising signs last season and worst-case scenario, the Rams could draft a receiver in the mid-rounds this year.
But at the end of the day, this would accomplish two things for the Los Angeles Rams. Not only would the team significantly bolster the offensive line, but the front office would make it easier to navigate the cap in the coming years.