Jalen Ramsey Says He Will Report to Rams Training Camp Without New Contract

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistMay 26, 2020

SANTA CLARA, CALIFORNIA - DECEMBER 21: Jalen Ramsey #20 of the Los Angeles Rams watches the quarterback in the second quarter against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi's Stadium on December 21, 2019 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images)
Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images

When the Los Angeles Rams traded for Jalen Ramsey, the Pro Bowl corner was so desperate to get out of Jacksonville he promised the team he would not hold out for a new contract. 

It looks like he's a man of his word.

Ramsey told reporters Tuesday he plans to report to training camp with or without a new long-term contract. He is set to make $13.7 million in 2020, the final year of his rookie contract.

“The Rams know where I stand, and I think that’s all that matters at the end of the day,” Ramsey told reporters.

It's likely Ramsey will seek a deal that will make him the highest-paid cornerback in NFL history. The 25-year-old has reached the Pro Bowl in each of the last three seasons and recorded 50 tackles, five passes defensed and one interception in 12 games with the Rams and Jaguars. Pro Football Focus gave him a 71.5 grade for the season, a noticeable dip from his other Pro Bowl seasons.

The Miami Dolphins signed Byron Jones to a five-year, $82.5 million contract in March to make him the highest-paid cornerback in the NFL. The Rams could use that deal as a base and sign Ramsey to something like a six-year, $96 million contract that would allow them to deflate his 2020 cap hit.

After releasing Todd Gurley and trading Brandin Cooks, the Rams are the NFL's most cap-strapped team, currently sitting more than $1 million over the cap. Converting Ramsey's base salary into a bonus as part of a contract extension would allow them some breathing room to add some depth around the roster.

Once the dead cap charges for Gurley and Cooks fall off the books in 2021, the Rams will have more breathing room for Ramsey to take up a larger portion of the cap. It would behoove both sides to get a deal done—especially to avoid a franchise tag situation a year from now that does lead to Ramsey holding out.