Whoever trades for Jalen Ramsey needs to be ready to pay him, too

Los Angeles Rams v Seattle Seahawks
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Four years ago, the eff-them-picks Rams made an all-in move for cornerback Jalen Ramsey. Less than three years after giving him a market-value contract, they’re ready to move on.

So why are the Rams shedding one of their best players? They’re supposedly committed to turning things around and not simply paying the bill for the Super Bowl buffet they enjoyed in 2021. Shouldn’t Ramsey, still only 28 years old, be part of that future?

The problem likely isn’t the balance of his current contract. The problem likely is that he’s angling for a new contract.

He has three years left on the five-year extension he signed in 2020. He’s due to make $17 million this year ($12.5 million of which is fully guaranteed), $18.5 million in 2024, and $19.5 million in 2025.

That’s an average of $18.33 million per year, over the balance of the deal. The full contract had an average of $20 million annually.

The cornerback market has sputtered in recent years, not increasing at the same rate as the salary cap. And Ramsey surely understands it.

There was talk before the 2022 season about Ramsey getting a new deal, but he still had four years left at the time. Now, with three years left, he likely wants a new deal — and he may be getting a new team in order to make that happen.

That seems to be the real reason why the Rams are trading him. It’s not because his skills have diminished, even if they have a bit. It’s not because his current deal has a bunch of phony-baloney, expensive, back-end balloon payments.

It’s because Ramsey wants more, and that the Rams are trying to accommodate him before things get as ugly as they did when he wanted out of Jacksonville.

That’s always the reality of trading for a guy who wants out of his current NFL situation. There’s a chance that, eventually, he’ll want out of his next situation, too.

That apparently won’t stop another team from giving up something to the Rams to get Ramsey, and then something more to Ramsey than he’s due to receive over the next three years.

31 responses to “Whoever trades for Jalen Ramsey needs to be ready to pay him, too

  1. Is it just me ? But whatever happened to your word ? You sign a contract, you adhere to it. Of course, it goes both ways ….but…if you don’t like the GUARANTEED $$, then don’t sign the damn contract.

  2. I can hardly blame players for maximizing their earnings because the NFL is a cash cow with lots of owners pockets just spilling over. You are worth what teams are willing and able to pay, which is a ridiculous amount to the average Joe Six-pack.

  3. i understand wanting a new deal going into the final year, but after only 2 years of a 5 year deal? seems like whoever trades for him should get his understanding that hes playing through the 4th year of that deal

  4. There are certain players who can bring a championship. Deion Sanders did it for Steve Young and the 49ers back in the day. Jalen Ramsey just did it for Matt Stafford and the Rams. There’s probably a decent veteran QB out there right now that would love to have what Steve Young and Matt Stafford have on their ring fingers, but they need that game changing defender to do it. When we’re talking about throwing $35 million around on a below average QB, how much is a super bowl trophy worth? Most of the free agents aren’t worth half of what teams will pay them, and lots of veterans gear it down a couple notches after getting paid. Ramsey only has one gear. I’d sign him before another team comes to their senses.

  5. Ramsey has been beaten like a drum since 1 year after he signed the contract……what film are you looking at Charlie ?

  6. Really, an NFL player wanting more money? Stop the presses. This league is nothing but unadulterated greed.

  7. Ramsey was beaten on occasion this past year but he’s still one of the better CBs in the league. Who knows, he might have been nursing an injury at the time or he simply got beat by some of the greater number of elite receivers in the league. It happens.
    He probably sees one more big $ contract in his career and is trying to cash in now before it’s too late.

  8. Not even that good. Gets burned a lot. Rams will not be able to get much for him even under the current contract.

  9. It makes no sense to trade him this year. If they do they only get 5.6 million cap savings but incur 19.6 million dead cap. If they trade him next year it’s 15.3 million cap savings and 11.4 million dead cap. Plus you get the services of one of the best corners for one more year. I don’t care if he wants a new deal now he can wait until next year with a different team.

  10. I didn’t realize that he was that young. He gets torched pretty often, I would be happy to get him off the books if I were the rams. The super bowl they won was in spite of Ramsey, not because of him.

  11. Keep in mind that football contracts are agreed by both team and player with the implicit understanding that they are likely to be reevaluated in about three years. Any contract must be viewed in terms of common and accepted practices. Note that a portion of his contract was frontloaded in the assumption that they would renegotiate after a few years. That said, I don’t think Jalen Ramsey is where I’d happily spend $18M of my team’s money next year.

  12. He also avoids contact whenever possible. He needs a physical safety to come in and make the tackle.

  13. I’m not sure who is going to be willing to trade a high pick AND pay a premier CB on the downside of his career. This is the same age Sherman left the Seahawks….this will probably end the same way….2 mediocre years / then out

    Ramsey isn’t the dominant factor he was 6 years ago

  14. Ramsey is no longer an elite corner and has been getting torched since last year. He is a locker room cancer and a loud mouth diva. He isn’t worth the $$$ he feels he deserves

  15. Man the Rams are going to be terrible this year. Finally unloading these bloated contracts for whatever they can get for the few assets they have, turns out they realize they can’t rebuild their roster without the picks they dismissed not so long ago. Rams have no picks, no cap and more holes on that roster than a piece of Swiss chess. It’s gonna be a longggg year or two in LA.

  16. If a team gives in to a player asking for anew contract 2 years into a 5 year deal then it creates more headaches down the line.
    He is not getting nay younger, just refuse.
    His options –
    a – retire (wont happen)
    b – pout and keep playing
    c – stay becoming a head ache / locker room cancer

    Don’t give in. The bigger a headache he tries to be the more it will worry other potential teams.
    He may try dogging it, not playing hard, in which case a team can’t prove anything.
    But if he dogs it, and is cut, new teams may be worried he has declined, and they see how he acted. He is unlikeley to get a pay raise.

    This hurts the Rams in the short run, but shows future players this type of action wont work.

  17. Ramsey is an above average CB who thinks he’s Revis Island. NewsFlash: He isn’t anywhere close to that. By the numbers, he’s mostly mid-grade and wilts against the better competition that he faces. Pretty sure his wiki profile states that Deebo is his owner.

  18. It might be different if he (or any player) were out-performing their current contract… but that clearly is not the case with Ramsey, who is already at the top of the CB market.

  19. Exactly why these backloaded on paper only contracts destroy teams. The player gets his money up front then refuses to finish the deal he signed. Voided years and all the other ridiculous maneuvers should be eliminated. Shorter term guaranteed contracts with the actual average spread over the contract. 3 years 60 million is 20 million a year for cap purposes. Eliminate holdouts and renegotiation. If a player doesn’t honor his deal he would be required to pay back the full amount. Teams can’t cut a guy 2 years into a five year deal.

  20. The Rams are recognizing that whereas before, teams over-valued draft picks, the market has changed and they are hoping someone is willing to make a silly “We can go all-in too!” type move to acquire Ramsey (see also: Russell Wilson).

    The Rams recognize that what worked in getting them a Super Bowl win will not worked going forward – they broke the NFL and the market has changed.. the era of eff them picks is over.

    Whether they will be successful in pivoting remains to be seen.

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