Weddle may be gone, but the talent that remains can carry Los Angeles Rams in the long run.
Eric Weddle signing with the Los Angeles Rams wasn’t always a blessing. To some, the Rams were acquiring a washed-up former all-pro and in 2019 Weddle was some of his old self and some of what those fans predicted.
Last year Weddle made his fair share of tackles, leading the team with 108. He also defended against four total passes. His tackling numbers were the best he has racked up in half a decade, but it was evident that LA had picked Weddle up at the end of his run. A six-time pro bowler and two-time first-team all-pro has retired, and as crazy as it sounds, the Rams are still in great shape at safety.
John Johnson III
The name that seems to have been lost in the news circuit is John Johnson III. Johnson, while only playing six games in 2019 made his mark. He finished his shortened year with 27 tackles, two passes defended, and two interceptions. Johnson has been and will be the Rams’ future at the safety spot. A pro-bowl snub a year ago and the player in which the organization believe is the future leader of the secondary, Johnson is the main asset that LA has locked and loaded at the safety spot. In 2021 Johnson’s contract expires and he will be up for a payday that will certainly meet the standards of the top safeties in the league. As for next year, the Rams are in good hands with their strong safety spot.
Next to John Johnson the list of names the Rams could put in the other safety spot is scarce. Marqui Christian (an unrestricted free agent) could be a fit but as a long term option? Nick Scott is a special teams savant, but is he the answer to the Rams’ safety problem? Taylor Rapp is the answer at the free safety spot. As Rapp filled in for Johnson as the Rams’ strong safety after week six the rookie didn’t disappoint.
Rapp made 99 tackles with two interceptions and eight passes defended. He was better than good for the Rams and his play as a hybrid safety/linebacker proved he has the versatility to run with Johnson at safety. The rookie is now a year older with a year of starting experience, it would come as a shock if Rapp wasn’t the second piece to a young star-studded duo at the safety spot next season. If he is, Los Angeles’ future is bright at safety.
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