Comparing Tre’Davious White’s Signing to Jalen Ramsey: Apples to Oranges?

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The Los Angeles Rams made their first big splash in free agency by signing cornerback Tre’Davious White. Instead of signing a top remaining defensive lineman, the team opted to bolster their secondary with the best name left on the market. Some fans may choose to call this an echo of the Jalen Ramsey addition during the 2019 season. However, just how close does the 2024 signing of White line up with Ramsey’s addition in 2019?

Comparing Tre’Davious White to Jalen Ramsey

NFL: Los Angeles Rams at Seattle Seahawks
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First, one needs to start with where Jalen Ramsey was in his career when the Rams picked him up. The cornerback was coming off a 2018 season in which he earned a 72.1 PFF grade. At the time, many believed he was one of the top cornerbacks in football and was about 24 years old. However, he was notoriously causing a stir, nabbing headlines around the country.

In 2024, White is coming off a season in which he earned a 68.0 PFF grade but also is coming off a season that was cut short by an Achilles injury. The cornerback suffered a right Achilles tear in Week 4 against the Miami Dolphins, missing the regular season.

If one wants to write off that and look back to his last attendance-heavy season, he posted an 11-game year with the Bills in 2021. In that season, he earned a 65.1 PFF grade.

As such, if White can stay healthy, Rams fans might argue that the cornerback matches the caliber of Ramsey. That is, at least for the short term. White is now 29 years old and just a few years away from hitting fatherhood. That said, Ramsey didn’t stick around forever, either. Ramsey played with the Rams from 2019 until the end of the 2022 season.

In the end, an argument can be made that White’s addition rivals Ramsey for 2024. However, beyond that, there are no guarantees. Of course, that assumes White can stay healthy for at least three-quarters of an entire season for the first time since 2020.

How Does Tre’Davious White Signing Factor With Aaron Donald‘s Exit

NFL: New England Patriots at Los Angeles Rams
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If Tre’Davious White can stay healthy and slide into a Jalen Ramsey-type role with the squad, it may help mask Donald’s absence in 2024. By adding White, the Rams are banking on an increase in coverage sacks. In essence, they will be hoping to lock down wide receivers long enough to allow a likely slower pass rush to get to the quarterback.

Aaron Donald‘s exit will likely be felt, but one must remember that his retirement isn’t as massive of a statistical loss as it might seem at face value. Before hanging up his cleats, Donald was playing at a lower level than he had been at during his prime. In 2022, he missed significant time due to injury and since winning the Super Bowl, he failed to earn double-digit sacks.

Between 2015 and 2021, he had earned double-digit sacks in every year except one. As such, losing Donald will sting as it removes the double-teams sponge for the Los Angeles Rams, but the team has already been heading toward finding a new way for a couple of seasons.

NFL: New Orleans Saints at Los Angeles Rams
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