The Los Angeles Rams are trekking toward, arguably, their most crucial offseason period of the Sean McVay era. This time they’re not aiming to reinstall a championship roster, they’re doing it to respond to their 5-12 disaster of 2022.
And with that comes some restructuring likely to happen — particularly with some of their key pieces who have been instrumental to their past playoff and title runs. That includes one on a current $64 million deal and a 2022 stats leader: Leonard Floyd.
How can the Rams find a way to keep their sacks leader of this past season? Skyler Carlin of Rams Wire on USA Today wrote on Monday, January 16 that Floyd’s four-year, $64 million contract that makes him an unrestricted free agent for 2025 could be up for some tweaking by the Rams’ front office.
“Among the players the Rams could restructure the contract for this offseason, Leonard Floyd is certainly a candidate,” Carlin wrote. “The veteran edge rusher carries a $22 million cap hit in 2023, making him the fourth-highest cap hit on the roster.”
Floyd Delivered Final Surge in Disappointing 2022 for the Rams
Despite the turmoil of the Rams’ injury ravaged campaign, Floyd emerged as one of the Rams who delivered a late charge to end the season strong.
“Floyd finished this season strong with four sacks in the final four weeks to give him nine-plus sacks in each of his first three seasons with the Rams,” Carlin said.
The 6-foot-5, 240-pound edge rusher even started the season out slow: Being held to zero sacks in the first six games of the season. He didn’t record any stats in that department until October 30, 2022 against the rival San Francisco 49ers — which was a two-sack outing despite the 31-14 loss.
But from there, Floyd would go on to become one of the more healthier performers for a Rams team that witnessed a long list of players getting on injured reserve including fellow defender Aaron Donald and Super Bowl 56 Most Valuable Player Cooper Kupp. Floyd went on to bust out two more games of getting two sacks against the New Orleans Saints on November 20, 2022 and December 19, 2022 against the Green Bay Packers.
Notable quarterbacks he sacked this past season? Past Super Bowl winners in Aaron Rodgers and Russell Wilson.
Floyd has delivered his best consistent production with the Rams. Since his arrival in 2020, he has never produced below nine sacks each season and his 29 career sacks is more than the 18.5 he had in four seasons with the Chicago Bears.
Is There Still a Chance the Rams May Not Have Floyd in 2023?
While Floyd earned the label of being a “restructure” candidate for the Rams, there’s still this scenario: Cutting or trading away their top sack leader.
“Cutting or trading Floyd post-June 1st would incur a $6.5 million dead-cap penalty while freeing up $15.5 million in cap savings,” Carlin mentioned. “Moving on from Floyd would ensure the Rams would lose their best edge rusher in two straight offseasons, though.”
As it is, the Rams lost Von Miller in March 2022 to the Buffalo Bills on a six-year, $120 million deal. And, the Rams dealt away one past star who earned more than $60 million with the team: Wide receiver Robert Woods, once paid $65 million by L.A. before being traded away to the Tennessee Titans.
But, if the Rams are adamant about keeping their core intact for one more season, Floyd would have to be included on this redemption tour as well — even if it means taking lesser money.