The Los Angeles Rams broke the internet earlier this morning when they packaged six picks and sent them to the Tennessee Titans in exchange for the No. 1 overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft. The Rams traded their first-round pick (No. 15), two second-round picks (Nos. 43 and 45), and their third-round selection (No. 76) in this year's NFL Draft. They will also send the Titans their first- and third-round picks in 2017. In exchange, the Rams receive the No. 1 overall pick in 2016, plus the fourth-round (No. 113) and sixth-round (177) picks from the Tennessee Titans in this year's draft.
The move represents a significant investment by the Rams into a win-now strategy. As it stood, the Rams already had a limited number of picks to work with in the draft, but now that number just got a lot smaller and every miss will matter that much more. It's almost hard to not see Los Angeles trying to recover some of those picks via a trade, whether that's before, during, or after the NFL Draft. Though it will likely be seen as somewhat controversial, the move definitely represents the splash deal LA fans were hoping would come with an NFL franchise's return to the Los Angeles area.
To be sure, the Rams have officially sent notice to the rest of the league that they are serious about building a winner in LA. Owner Stan Kroenke may not win over everyone with this deal, but it's sure to send the message, loud and clear, that the Rams are here to compete and the move to Los Angeles was just the start of something bigger. That all depends on how the pick pans out, but the intent behind the move cannot be mistaken.
The front office is now officially under the microscope. Anytime a team packages up this much of their future for one guy, someone at the other end is going to be without a job if this pick goes sideways. It's commendable that the Rams think the team can handle the move, a slow offseason in free agency, and the responsibility that goes with picking at the No. 1 overall spot. How this decision could go a long way in determining if those in charge continue to remain at the helm.
Then again, as we wrote earlier this month, Kroenke seems to have a different vision for his business than any other team.