Rams Should Steal This Free Agent Away From the 49ers

Boosting their defense and hurting the 49ers at the same time would be the ultimate win-win for the Rams.

Oct 30, 2022; Inglewood, California, USA; Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay meets with San
Oct 30, 2022; Inglewood, California, USA; Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay meets with San / Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Rams haven't exactly done anything to move the needle in free agency so far, but the surprising retirement of Aaron Donald has got to create more of a sense of urgency.

L.A. can't afford to be complacent, especially with a top-12 number in terms of available salary cap space. Many marquee free agents are already off the board, but one former San Francisco 49 remains as a very attractive target.

The Rams need to sign Chase Young.

Rams Rumors: Former 49er Chase Young a Perfect Free Agent Target

Edge rusher was already one of the Rams' biggest needs this offseason, and now with Donald gone it should be even more of a priority to add pass-rushing help in free agency. And Chase Young would offer the most bang for their buck.

The 49ers acquired the former No. 2 overall pick as a short-term rental from the Washington Commanders last year, and he became a free agent after playing just half a season for the 49ers.

Young's 2.5 sacks in San Fran (plus 1 in the Super Bowl) don't look like anything special on paper, but relying solely on that number underrates how much of an impact he had.

Pro Football Focus gave Young a 75.8 pass rush grade on the season, and his 74 pressures ranked No. 13 among all edge defenders.

Young isn't some one-dimensional rusher that only plays on passing downs either, having actually graded out even better against the run than on pass-rush snaps in three of his four NFL seasons. He's a true every-down difference maker.

The Rams' +450 odds to win the NFC West rank second in the division, obviously trailing the favored 49ers (-240).

One signing won't suddenly make the Rams the favorites, but this move would help L.A. start to close the gap.

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