football-player football-score football-helmet football-ball Accuracy Arm-Strength Balance Ball-Security Ball-Skills Big-Play-Ability Block-Deconstruction Competitive-Toughness Core-Functional-Strength Decision-Making Discipline Durability Effort-Motor Elusivness Explosiveness Football-IQ Footwork Functional-Athleticism Hand-Counters Hand-Power Hand-Technique Hands Lateral-Mobility Leadership Length Mechanics Mobility Pass-Coverage-Ability Pass-Protection Pass-Sets Passing-Down-Skills Pocket-Manipulation Poise Power-at-POA Progressions RAC-Ability Range Release-Package Release Route-Running Run-Defending Separation Special-Teams-Ability-1 Versatility Vision Zone-Coverage-Skills Anchor-Ability Contact-Balance Man-Coverage-Skills Tackling Lifted Logic Web Design in Kansas City clock location phone email play chevron-down chevron-left chevron-right chevron-up facebook tiktok checkbox checkbox-checked radio radio-selected instagram google plus pinterest twitter youtube send linkedin search arrow-circle bell left-arrow right-arrow tdn-mark filled-play-circle yellow-arrow-circle dark-arrow-circle star cloudy snowy rainy sunny plus minus triangle-down link close drag minus-circle plus-circle pencil premium trash lock simple-trash simple-pencil eye cart
NFL Draft

Who Won Sony Michel Trade: Rams or Patriots?

  • The Draft Network
  • August 25, 2021
  • Share

There was a pretty big trade in the NFL on Wednesday morning that saw the New England Patriots send former Georgia running back Sony Michel to the Los Angeles Rams in exchange for a 2022 fifth-round pick and a 2022 sixth-round pick, per Adam Schefter. This is where things get a bit complicated. Those two picks could actually turn into a single fourth-round pick if the Rams receive a compensatory selection in that round. To be clear, the Rams would get their fifth and sixth-round picks back in this scenario, per The Athletic’s Jourdan Rodrigue.  

On paper, this looks like a major win for the Patriots. There’s been little doubt coming out of Foxboro that Damien Harris is the team’s RB1. Behind him, New England’s embarrassment of riches at the position has been on display all preseason long. Rookie fourth-round pick Rhamondre Stevenson has been excellent in his first two professional games. Stevenson has rushed for 193 yards and four touchdowns (!) on 25 carries thus far. J.J. Taylor, a second-year undrafted free agent out of Arizona, has also impressed both as a runner and as a pass-catcher while totaling 152 yards and a touchdown on 22 touches. For comparative purposes, Michel has rushed for just 57 yards on 13 carries through the same two games, while failing to visit the end zone. One has to conclude that James White will also continue to play an important role in New England’s backfield this coming season. 

With these four running backs all virtual locks to make the Patriots’ roster at this point, are we sure they weren’t going to outright release Michel in a week’s time?

Look, we understand the Rams needed to do something at the running back position. Losing Cam Akers for the season was a major blow. It left the Rams incredibly thin at tailback, with just Darrell Henderson and his 177 career carries as the most experienced ball-carrier on the roster. It’s crystal clear why the Rams felt like they couldn’t go into the season with a 5-foot-8 running back that’s yet to prove he could handle the bulk of the work in the running game as their only formidable option. It’s worth acknowledging that Henderson recently sprained his thumb at practice. It’s a minor injury, but one worth mentioning for a player that’s missed six combined games in two seasons. Before acquiring Michel this morning, the players behind Henderson on the depth chart were 2021 seventh-round pick Jake Funk, 2020 UDFA Xavier Jones, and 2021 UDFA Otis Anderson. Something clearly needed to be done here.

But I can’t help but wonder if that something could have been done at a considerably lower cost, either through free agency or another trade. Whether the compensation for Michel ends up being a single fourth-round pick or two day-three picks, it’s a steep price to pay for a player that has failed to live up to his draft designation while battling injury after injury in the pros.

We’re trying not to be too negative here—we actually can see a scenario where this deal works out in the Rams’ favor. Michel was one of my favorite running backs to watch in college over the past five years. I would love to see him get healthy and back on track in Los Angeles. If he can remain on the field, the opportunity will certainly be there for the taking. What are the odds of that happening, though? My heart tells me one thing, but my mind tells me another. 

This trade is pretty lopsided in New England’s favor. I’m excited to revisit this deal at the conclusion of the 2021 season.

Filed In

Related Articles

Written By

The Draft Network