RB-needy Rams land Michel in commerce with Patriots

NFL

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. — The Los Angeles Rams have acquired Sony Michel from the New England Patriots so as to add some much-needed depth on the operating again place.

New England obtained two conditional draft picks — one within the fifth spherical and one other within the sixth — within the deal, which the Rams introduced Wednesday morning.

Michel fills an instantaneous want for the Rams, who will play the season with out rising star Cam Akers after he tore his proper Achilles tendon whereas understanding earlier than coaching camp.

In Akers’ absence, Darrell Henderson Jr. has taken over as starter, however the Rams lack depth behind the third-year professional.

Second-year professional Xavier Jones, an undrafted free agent in 2020, and rookie seventh-round choose Jake Funk have competed all through the preseason with the hope of proving they may fill the place.

On the outset of coaching camp, coach Sean McVay mentioned the Rams would give their younger backs ample alternative to compete for the job however left open the chance that the group may search for outdoors assist when the season opener approached.

Requested this week whether or not Jones and Funk had proved via two preseason video games that they may very well be prepared for Week 1 towards the Chicago Bears on Sept. 12, McVay mentioned the Rams have been within the strategy of figuring that out.

“We bought slightly little bit of time,” McVay mentioned. “Darrell is a man that is been established and accomplished some good issues. However I used to be happy with each these guys.”

Henderson suffered a gentle thumb sprain in apply Monday however returned to apply Tuesday with a solid or brace defending his left hand.

A fourth-year professional, Michel has rushed for two,292 yards and 14 touchdowns in 28 begins for the Patriots, who drafted him within the first spherical with the thirty first choose in 2018.

In a 13-3 victory over the Rams in Tremendous Bowl LIII, Michel rushed for 94 yards and a landing on 18 carries.

Michel is because of earn a base wage of $1.79 million within the remaining 12 months of his contract in 2021 after the Patriots beforehand elected to not train his fifth-year choice for 2022. He had drawn rave opinions from Patriots operating again coach Ivan Fears this preseason, with Fears saying he had “upped his whole sport.”

“I’ve at all times favored him as a runner, however now he is proven to us that he may play within the passing sport and be very efficient,” Fears mentioned. “He is had an awfully good camp.”

Final season, Michel missed six video games when he was positioned on injured reserve after Week 3 due to a quadriceps damage. In 9 video games he rushed for 449 yards and a landing on 79 carries. In a 24-3 loss to the Rams, Michel rushed for 22 yards on seven carries.

The Patriots have gone via coaching camp with a surplus of six operating backs, together with third-year professional Damien Harris, who took over the beginning job from Michel final season, and veteran James White.

The Patriots’ surplus at operating again has been a scorching subject at camp, with Harris, Michel, White, fourth-round choose Rhamondre Stevenson, spark plug J.J. Taylor and veteran core particular groups participant Brandon Bolden on the depth chart, and the chance that the group would preserve a most of 5 gamers on the place.

Final week, coach Invoice Belichick mentioned, “They’ve all gotten alternatives and proven positively. Competitors brings out the most effective in all of us. It is an awesome state of affairs.”

ESPN’s Mike Reiss contributed to this report.

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