The Los Angeles Rams have made it clear that they are going in a new direction after releasing two of their long-time veterans, linebacker James Laurinaitis and defensive end Chris Long.
After disappointing seasons from the defensive captains, the franchise has decided not to take either on the trip out west. In an interview with ESPN’s Nick Wagoner, Long himself was unsure about his playing future:
“Certainly I know he last few years I have been injured and the production is way down. So the bottom line is it’s a production business.”
After recording 41.5 sacks between 2010-13, Long has only played in 18 games over the last two seasons while recording just four sacks in that time.
Meanwhile, Laurinaitis was healthy and started all 16 games at middle linebacker last season, but his production dipped as well as he recorded a career-low 61 solo tackles. The move has cleared up approximately $24 million against the salary cap as the Rams hope to use that money to re-sign some of their young, talented free agents.
While Laurinaitis and Long’s careers as Rams has officially ended, the two are sure to find suitors. Long has established a reputation as an impact pass rusher while Laurinaitis has proven his durability by not missing a single game in his career.