NFL News: Blockbuster Trade Between Rams & Titans Shakes Up Draft

The 2016 NFL Draft will take place beginning April 28, and the Tennessee Titans are no longer on the clock after executing a blockbuster trade with the Los Angeles Rams on Thursday morning. In the deal, the Rams will acquire the first overall pick in this year’s draft, along with a fourth-round pick and a sixth-round pick, in exchange for the 15th overall selection this year, three other 2016 picks, a first-round pick next year, and a third-round pick in 2017 as well. On the surface, the trade seems to make sense for both sides, with some detractors arguing that the Rams gave up too much.

From the Titans’ perspective, they were able to acquire a surplus of assets in the trade to help boost a team in desperate need of players. With this trade, they could potentially land four new starters for 2016 in addition to the second and third-round picks they’ve been able to keep. Tennessee now owns nine selections in this year’s draft after the deal was consummated. For the Rams, it was simple: They desperately need a quarterback. All indications are that by moving up to the top spot, they’ll draft either Carson Wentz from North Dakota State or Jared Goff from California.

Both parties released statements after the trade was made public and official. The architect of the deal on the Titans’ side, Jon Robinson, was only named the team’s general manager this offseason, pulling off a mega-trade that should go a long way in fortifying a roster that hasn’t been to the postseason since 2008. In a statement released by the team’s official website, he said that this will definitely help the franchise.

“It is not often that you have the No. 1 overall pick and we hope to not be in this position again. But we tried to use that pick as currency to work the draft and maximize player acquisition. We now have the ammunition to work the draft and acquire players that are good for this football team… In terms of timing, it made sense for us to do this now as it gives us time to adjust and make sure we target more players.”

titans rams trade [Photo by Mark Humphrey/AP Images]The Rams, meanwhile, were looking to make a splash after their recent relocation to Los Angeles, and this trade accomplishes just that. They’ll have the opportunity to draft their franchise quarterback, rather than hope that one of their current sub-par signal-callers can manage things while their defense and rushing attack excels. Rams GM Les Snead hopes to usher in a new era with this trade, as reported by LA’s official website.

“Our philosophy has always been to build through the draft. This trade is a reflection of that goal and Mr. Kroenke’s dedication to assembling a winning team on the field. We appreciate his commitment as we continue to improve our roster and lay the foundation for our future through this year’s draft.”

rams titans trade [Photo by Luis M. Alvarez/AP Images]This trade will mean the Rams franchise will be selecting first overall for the sixth time in their history. They took Sam Bradford with the No. 1 pick back in 2010, but injuries and inconsistencies prevented him from fulfilling that potential. They dealt Bradford to Philadelphia last offseason in exchange for Nick Foles and a second-round pick. Foles ended up being demoted, and head coach Jeff Fisher named Case Keenum the starter heading into the 2016 season. Ironically, Fisher was the head coach of the Titans for 16-plus seasons before his hiring in St. Louis in 2012.

Of course, the Rams have almost come full-circle with this trade. Back in 2012, Fisher and company dealt the No. 2 pick to the Washington Redskins in exchange for a bevy of draft picks. The Redskins ended up taking Robert Griffin III while the Rams tried to build their team in other areas. They’ve reversed philosophies this time around, but clearly, a quarterback has been a desperate need ever since and now they have a chance to fill that hole.

[AP Photo/Jason DeCrow]