Superstar cornerback Jalen Ramsey and the LA Rams agreed to terms Wednesday on a five-year contract extension that will keep him in horns through the 2025 season. Ramsey is now the highest paid corner in the game, making $21 million annually. He is also making $3.5 million more than then next closest player at the position, Tre’davious White who makes $17.5 million annually.
The contract is also the highest average annual value–or AAV–assigned to a cornerback in NFL history. The previous record holder was Darrelle Revis, at $18.6 million AAV. The contract becomes the fourth such record breaking contract that the Rams have given out in the last three years.
Who is next after Ramsey?
The team can now turn its attention to locking up Cooper Kupp, John Johnson III, or possibly both. Drafted as part of the Rams famed 2017 class, each are key players and two of the best on the team. That is only half of the story, however, as both are also key leaders. Losing Kupp for the Super Bowl run in 2018 really changed the Rams offense, and losing Johnson III to a season ending shoulder injury early last season was crippling to the defense.
It may not be possible to sign both, so one may have to be franchise tagged. As I said in my article about the Rams impending free agents, tagging Johnson would cost roughly 11.4 million. When you compare that against the $18.5 million that Kupp would get under the tag, the easy choice is to negotiate with Kupp first.
Will the Rams regret the signing?
As mentioned by Lindsay Thiry, the Rams previously handed out the highest ever contracts at their positions to Jared Goff, Aaron Donald, and Todd Gurley. They are also are carrying the NFL’s highest ever dead cap hit with Brandin Cooks $21.6 million this year.
Time will tell if the contract is worth it, but you can’t argue with the logic. The team is locking up one of the best players in the game of football for the next six years. Yes, the previous Rams contracts have been hit-or-miss, but this one seems destined to be a home run.
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