McVay: Rams Intend To Ink WR Robert Woods To Extension Soon
LOS ANGELES: Robert Woods is off to another strong start with the Los Angeles Rams in a career that has always exceeded expectations, and his team is planning to reward him for it.
Rams coach Sean McVay on Thursday all but guaranteed Woods will get a contract extension soon, keeping another franchise cornerstone in his native Los Angeles for the long term.
The 28-year-old Woods is already signed through 2021 in a deal that pays him $9 million next season, but the Rams have been determined to bump up Woods’ pay to a level commensurate with his achievements and leadership for the team. Los Angeles already reached a deal last week with Woods’ counterpart, receiver Cooper Kupp, who got a three-year, $48 million extension through 2023.
We want to get (Woods) extended, too, McVay said. Hes a huge part of what were doing. Thats something I think is definitely important. … Robert and Cooper have been pillars of what weve done the last few years. Its great to get Cooper under contract. Im so happy for him, and you can expect to see something similar down the line here very shortly were working toward for Robert.
Woods’ speed, consistency and precision have made him one of the NFL’s most productive receivers since he joined his hometown Rams in 2017 from Buffalo, where he spent his first four seasons.
The Southern California product had a career-high 1,219 yards receiving with six touchdowns in 2018, and he followed it up last year with 1,134 yards and two more scores on a career-high 90 receptions. McVay frequently targets him for receiver screens, and Woods also features regularly in the Rams’ running game on jet sweeps, carrying the ball 36 times in the last two years.
Woods was immediately in top form in the Rams’ 20-17 victory over Dallas in the inaugural game at SoFi Stadium last week. He had six catches for 105 yards, including a 20-yard grab on the first play from scrimmage at SoFi, and he added a 14-yard run.
Woods’ performance was the 12th 100-yard receiving game of his career. He has caught at least 40 passes in the first seven seasons of his NFL career with the Rams and the Bills, who drafted him in the second round in 2013. Woods has also been healthy throughout his entire career, playing at least 12 games in every season.
The Rams had struggled for consistent play at receiver before Woods and Kupp both arrived in 2017. Woods is the first Rams wideout with back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons since Torry Holt in 2007.
The Rams’ front office under general manager Les Snead has a history of rewarding its elite players with top-of-the-market contracts, even if the players don’t get to stick around long enough to play them out.
In a two-year span, the Rams have given out the biggest contracts in NFL history at the time to a running back (Todd Gurley), a quarterback (Jared Goff), a defensive player (Aaron Donald) and a cornerback (Jalen Ramsey). Los Angeles also signed receiver Brandin Cooks to a lucrative extension right after trading for him in 2018, only to trade him to Houston last spring.
Ramsey got his five-year, $105 million extension during the week before the season opener, followed by a healthy extension for Kupp.
McVay said the Rams aren’t worried about having two receivers making top dollar under their salary cap limitations.
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