The trade took the NFL by surprise, as Watkins is just 24 years old and three years into his career, and remains regarded as a top talent.
The Rams are thrilled to have him aboard, even if his contract expires after this season.
“With Sammy, I think clearly you’re getting a special receiver,” first-year head coach Sean McVay said to Myles Simmons of TheRams.com. “Obviously, his career when he’s been available, he’s been outstanding in terms of being able to stretch the field vertically, but when the ball’s in his hands, good things happen. We feel like he’s going to be a good addition to our offense.”
The Rams surrendered cornerback E.J. Gaines and a 2018 second-round pick for Watkins and a sixth-round pick in next year’s draft.
Watkins, a former fourth-overall draft pick, has a 1,000-yard campaign and a 980-yard season on his resume. He played in just eight games last season due to foot problems, and recorded 430 yards and two touchdowns.
The organization hopes, if healthy, he’ll open up the field for fellow wideouts Robert Woods, Tavon Austin, Cooper Kupp, and Pharoh Cooper.
“When you attack a team with your pass game, you’d like to use the width of the field and the length of the field. And that’s what speed can do to allow you to attack vertically as well as the width,” said general manager Les Snead.
– With h/t to NFL.com
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