With free agency less than a week away, the Los Angeles Rams have plenty of crucial decisions to make as they look to revamp the roster for the upcoming 2017 NFL season. Although the team has struggled the past several years, the one consistent strength has always been their defense.
However, after placing the franchise tag to keep cornerback Trumaine Johnson on the team earlier this offseason, the Rams may lose a vital piece to their secondary. It appears veteran safety T.J. McDonald will likely sign elsewhere when free agency opens on March 9, according to Vincent Bonsignore of Los Angeles Daily News:
— Vincent Bonsignore (@DailyNewsVinny) March 5, 2017
McDonald just completed his four-year, $2.9 million rookie deal and if he does indeed leave elsewhere via free agency, his departure will significantly impact the team’s secondary. He has been an established starter since being selected in the third round of the 2013 NFL Draft, but a replacement for him could potentially be Cody Davis, who has spent his first four seasons as a backup safety.
However, if the Rams choose to look elsewhere, other safeties on the market include Tony Jefferson ($5.7 million market value), John Cyprien ($4.9 million), Jahleel Addae ($4.5 million) and Barry Church ($4.5 million). Considering the fact that the team does not have significant cap space, they can also look for cheaper safeties or target a safety in the upcoming draft. Regardless, losing McDonald will tremendously hurt the secondary.