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Lamarcus Joyner, Sammy Watkins are top candidates to receive franchise tag from Rams

Lamarcus Joyner, Sammy Watkins are top candidates to receive franchise tag from Rams
lamarcus-joyner-sammy-watkins-are-top-candidates-to-receive-franchise-tag-from-rams

In their ideal offseason world, the Rams already would have signed safety Lamarcus Joyner and receiver Sammy Watkins to new contracts. Now it seems they might have to make a choice.

 and the Rams are expected to utilize that option,The NFL’s deadline for applying a “tag” to a player will take place at 1 p.m. Tuesday, likely on one of two players who otherwise might leave via free agency.

 and the Rams would have the right to match the terms of that offer sheet., it guarantees that player will stay with the team in 2018. A non-exclusive tag is another option,If the Rams apply the exclusive-rights tag, but that would allow the player to sign an offer sheet with another team

 an exclusive tag seems more likely,Given the circumstances, but will it be applied to Joyner or Watkins?

 but the tag is a way to guarantee a player comes back. Given the importance of both players,Any pending free agent who isn’t tagged still can be signed to a new contract before (or after) the signing period opens on March 14, it’s likely not an easy decision for the Rams’ front office.

 it seemed more likely that the Rams would sign Joyner to a new,At the end of last season, multi-year contract and use the tag on Watkins. That’s based on how 2017 worked out for both players.

 started a career-high 12 games and recorded the first three interceptions of his NFL career.,Joyner, in his fourth NFL season, thrived under defensive coordinator Wade Phillips. Joyner, who struggled to find a role under the Rams’ previous coaching staff, moved from nickelback to free safety

 after a trade that sent cornerback E.J. Gaines and a second-round draft pick to Buffalo., Watkins never really got going. He arrived during training camp,So while Joyner exceeded expectations, in August

 but he did catch eight touchdowns.,Watkins,000-yard receiver, a former 1, seemed slow to develop a connection with quarterback Jared Goff and finished fourth on the team with 39 receptions and 593 yards

 they could better incorporate Watkins into their offense.,It wasn’t all about the stats, which opened up the field for other offensive threats. The Rams also believe that,[url=http://www.ramsfootballauthentic.com/mark-barron-jersey-authentic]Womens Mark Barron Jersey[/url], though. Watkins’ field-stretching speed forced opponents to account for him at all times, with a full offseason

This is the least surprising news to come out of the NFL combine. The only surprising outcome would be the Rams finding a trade, because it seems incredibly unlikely that anyone will be willing to give up anything of value for Austin. The most likely outcome sees the Rams releasing Austin and some team scooping him up on the open market to give him a chance to make an impression during training camp and the preseason.

Austin entered the league with plenty of promise as the No. 8 overall pick in the 2013 draft. He was the first receiver off the board; the second ended up being DeAndre Hopkins at No. 27 (oops). It's worth noting that Austin is one of many receivers who have underwhelmed recently as first-round picks. It's not just him.

 the Rams handed him a mega extension in August of 2016 worth up to $52 million. He proceeded to total 668 yards and four touchdowns in 2016. The Rams' new coaching staff under Sean McVay declined to use him much in 2017,But the fact remains that Austin never lived up to the billing. From 2013-15 he averaged 647.3 yards and 5.3 touchdowns from scrimmage per season. Even still,[url=http://www.ramsfootballauthentic.com/alec-ogletree-jersey-authentic]Womens Alec Ogletree Jersey[/url], when Austin racked up only 317 yards and one touchdown. 

 Austin's career with the Rams appears to be coming to an end. He'll never end up seeing all of that $52 million,And with that, but he still got paid a ton for very little production.

He sat out the entire 2017 season after going unsigned, serving a two-game suspension for violating the league’s substance abuse policy in the meantime. Shields is looking to revive his NFL career at the age of 30 and is already generating some interest.

He’ll also visit the Browns later in the week,[url=http://www.ramsfootballauthentic.com/greg-zuerlein-jersey-authentic]Authentic Greg Zuerlein Jersey[/url], a team desperate for help in the secondary.

The Rams have questions to answer of their own on defense with Nickell Robey-Coleman being a free agent and Kayvon Webster recovering from a torn Achilles. There’s a chance three new players will be starting at cornerback in 2018, which is why the Rams are exploring all of their options.

 reported Jon Becker., with both the 49ers and Raiders interested in upgrading at cornerback,Rams corner Trumaine Johnson is expected to hit the market as an unrestricted free agent next week when teams can begin talking with agents. And,[url=http://www.ramsfootballauthentic.com/johnny-hekker-jersey-authentic]Womens Johnny Hekker Jersey[/url], each franchise apparently is interested in making Johnson an offer

Tony Pauline of Draftanalyst.com also reported from the NFL combine in Indianapolis that San Francisco could have the edge in the quest for Johnson because they have more room under the salary cap.

"If the Raiders lose out on Johnson, that the Arizona Cardinals also are interested in Robinson.," wrote Pauline, they may turn to Patrick Robinson of the Eagles, who will be a much cheaper option, who noted, though

If the 49ers don’t land Johnson, one report has them thinking the Bears' Kyle Fuller could be a Plan B addition.

Though Rams head coach Sean McVay said at the combine that he would like Johnson to return, it’s been reported that isn’t likely after a trade for Chiefs cornerback Marcus Peters. The Rams may not be able to afford both.

 that keeps track of NFL salaries,The website Sportrac.com, projects Johnson will sign a deal to pay him about $13.6 million per year.

 if Landry departs,e Miami Dolphins have a plan if they happen to retain wide receiver Jarvis Landry. Things get a bit murky however, in the wake of the Dolphins granting Landry permission to seek a trade on Thursday.

 it doesn’t seem the Dolphins have such talent on their roster at either wide receiver or tight end., at least,Recent franchise history suggests it will take two players, to replace Landry’s 100 receptions per season. Worse

 the Los Angeles Rams’ speedy wide receiver who the Rams want to trade or release,That could send Miami into the free-agent market for someone such as Tavon Austin,[url=http://www.ramsfootballauthentic.com/trumaine-johnson-jersey-authentic]Authentic Trumaine Johnson Jersey[/url], or it could send them searching in the early or middle rounds of the draft for help. Or it could prompt a trade.

 the first day they were allowed. Miami then granted Landry permission to seek a trade. But the trade market for Landry is a wait-and-see proposition., and its approximate $16 million salary,The Dolphins put the non-exclusive franchise tag, on Landry on Feb. 20

Perhaps Miami keeps Landry. The Dolphins are supposedly prepared to stomach his massive salary next season.

 could come in handy., perhaps Miami acquires a wide receiver or tight end as part of a trade for Landry. Either,Or, or both

 the second-best total of his career. Perhaps he also adds 20 receptions.,Among returning wide receivers, who had a career-best 57 receptions last season, the Dolphins are led by Kenny Stills and DeVante Parker. It’s possible Parker, could pick up some of the slack by adding maybe 20 receptions in what would be regarded as a major breakthrough. Stills had 58 receptions last year

With an additional 40 receptions between the two of them,[url=http://www.ramsfootballauthentic.com/mark-barron-jersey-authentic]Authentic Mark Barron Jersey[/url], that would still leave Miami about 60 receptions shy of Landry’s average in a season.

 could help do the rest., Leonte Carroo and Isaiah Ford,The Dolphins could hope one wide receiver among the returning group of Jakeem Grant,[url=http://www.ramsfootballauthentic.com/alec-ogletree-jersey-authentic]Authentic Alec Ogletree Jersey[/url], last year’s seventh-round pick who missed the season with a knee injury

But that’s asking a lot — considering that trio hasn’t combined for 60 career receptions.

 the 2016 sixth-round pick,[url=http://www.ramsfootballauthentic.com/trumaine-johnson-jersey-authentic]Womens Trumaine Johnson Jersey[/url],Grant, showed promise last season with 13 receptions for 203 yards and two touchdowns.

 and he lost a little juice there in the middle of the season,“I think it just got tough for him where he was getting beat up just a little bit on some of the kickoff returns and punt returns,[url=http://www.ramsfootballauthentic.com/johnny-hekker-jersey-authentic]Authentic Johnny Hekker Jersey[/url],” Dolphins coach Adam Gase said of Grant on Wednesday at the NFL scouting combine.

“Then once he really got comfortable, [url=http://www.ramsfootballauthentic.com/rodger-saffold-jersey-authentic]Authentic Rodger Saffold Jersey[/url],he made an impact on our offense. We’re looking to build on that.”

 the 2016 third-round pick,Carroo,[url=http://www.ramsfootballauthentic.com/greg-zuerlein-jersey-authentic]Womens Greg Zuerlein Jersey[/url], had seven receptions for 69 yards last season.

“We’re still just bringing him along,” Gase said. “I think he has a better feel for the offense. Sometimes it’s tough to find that role when you had those three guys really that we all trusted and didn’t want off the field.”

 has totaled 71 receptions for 566 yards and three touchdowns in the two seasons since getting that deal. He’s been considered a disappointment since being a first-round pick in 2013., who signed a four-year,Austin,[url=http://www.ramsfootballauthentic.com/rodger-saffold-jersey-authentic]Womens Rodger Saffold Jersey[/url], $42 million extension in 2016

The free-agent market could feature high-priced talent such as Jacksonville’s Allen Robinson or the Los Angeles’ Sammy Watkins, or perhaps Jacksonville’s Marqise Lee.

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