Los Angeles Rams Free Agency: Former NFL Exec Warns ‘Buyer Beware’ On This FA Edge Rusher

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In his article, 2024 Free Agency: Lessons from a Former GM on the 33rd Team former Minnesota Vikings and Tennessee Titans executive Jeff Diamond laid out four lessons to live by for navigating free agency.

For him, signing former Vikings edge rusher Danielle Hunter would flout Lesson 2: Don’t sign free agents who have a significant injury history to lucrative deals.

Diamond writes of Hunter, “The 29-year-old Minnesota Vikings Pro Bowler is seeking a $25 million plus per year deal coming off 16.5 sacks and a league-high 23 tackles-for-loss. However, Danielle Hunter missed the entire 2020 season because of a neck injury and had a pec tear that cost him the last 10 games in 2021.”

NFL: Chicago Bears at Minnesota Vikings
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Los Angeles Rams Interest In Hunter

The Los Angeles Rams top need is an edge rusher to play opposite Byron Young and Hunter is a name that has floated around the franchise for the last two seasons since the departure of Leonard Floyd.

Hunter is a good fit for what the Rams ask of their edge rushers, but his health and age do raise red flags considering that he wants to be paid more than Maxx Crosby and Rashan Gary. His next contract will take him into his 30s when all bets are off when it comes to injuries.

More Pointing Toward Brian Burns

The Rams have also been rumored to be in the works on a sign-and-trade deal with the Carolina Panthers to acquire Brian Burns. Burns is recommended by Diamond as a good option in free agency as he meets the parameters of Lesson 1: Sign players in their mid-20s who are coming out of their rookie contracts.

Burns will be 26 heading into next season and has played in 80 of a possible 83 games. Burns will also be looking for around $25 million per year, which would put him near the top of the edge market.

Diamonds remaining lessons:

3rd Lesson: Don’t let current players talk you into signing their former teammates unless it’s a good deal and the right fit.

4th Lesson: Make sure the potential free agent signee fits your system.

NFL: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Carolina Panthers
Los Angeles Rams Search In Free Agency: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports