Should the Rams Pursue JuJu Smith-Schuster in NFL Free Agency?


The recent Los Angeles Rams trade for longtime Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford is still at the forefront of the minds of the Mob Squad nation. Despite front office staff personnel’s repeatedly flagrant disregard for high draft picks in the last few years, seemingly dispensing of them in utterly nonchalant fashion, Stafford is unquestionably a major improvement over the talented yet inconsistent Jared Goff.

Now that the proverbial stars have aligned and head coach Sean McVay now has a quarterback capable of running the present day iteration of his offense to its full potential, many fans are wondering what move is next. One of the names that has floated around is impending Pittsburgh Steelers free agent wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster.
Credit: Philip G. Pavely/USA TODAY Sports
Should the Rams Pursue JuJu Smith-Schuster in NFL Free Agency?

Smith-Schuster, who is originally from Long Beach, California and played college ball for the USC Trojans, was recently asked by TMZ Sports if he would ever consider making a hometown reunion this summer by signing with either the Los Angeles Chargers or Rams, to which he replied: “Nah, not right now. Until I actually get let go, other than that, I’m Pittsburgh for life.”

This should be a scenario of absolute no hard feelings for Rams fans. For starters, despite putting up solid numbers stat-wise, Smith-Schuster hasn’t been quite the true-blood No. 1 receiver the Steelers were looking for him to ascend to following the departure of Antonio Brown.

But the most glaring objection to the signing is that with Cooper Kupp, Robert Woods and Josh Reynolds, the Rams don’t currently have anything approaching a dire need at the receiver position. All three also should see an uptick not only in production, but usage rate now that Stafford will be adding yellow to his official jersey. However, to compliment Stafford’s strong-arm capabilities most effectively, and supplement him with the sort of Marvin Jones-esque bayonet he once depended upon on recently in Detroit, the Rams could use some sort of vertical downfield threat that defenses will have to monitor.

Rams Can Find Answers Elsewhere

But McVay and company will more than likely target those concerns (albeit with limited flexibility in terms of picks and cap space) in the offseason. On the bright side of things, the Rams could have a strong piece of their answer already on the lineup in the form of 2020 second-round pick Van Jefferson. With just a little good ol’ fashioned McVay polishing and ironing out of the kinks, Jefferson and his proven quickness and route-running can quickly morph him into the type of vertical threat that would greatly behoove the Rams with Stafford at the helm.

Even though they lost the game, Jefferson put on a memorable performance during the recent postseason loss against Green Bay , hauling in six passes for 46 yards in limited time.

Although it’s exceedingly tempting to get caught up in all the hullaballoo of pre- NFL Free Agency buzz, please make sure that you are navigating the colliding winds of trade speculation, rumor and general offseason dealings with a cautious degree of discretion, especially for Rams’ fans. The team is already favored by some unbiased spectators to not only win the division, but make a deep playoff run (if not more). The needless addition of starry names for starry names’ sake is not the remedy that will lead the team to the long-lasting success it is definitely pining for.

The Rams don’t a need JuJu Smith-Schuster homecoming.

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