Would Rams move Tyler Higbee if they land a top TE from this year’s draft? (2023)

The 2023 NFL Draft is shaping up to be one of the most important for the Los Angeles Rams in the Sean McVay era. The team is in between a Super Bowl winning roster and tearing it down to the studs, and their selections in this week’s draft could help pry open a new contention window over the next couple of seasons.

While the 2023 draft class has some shortcomings in terms of top offensive tackles and a lack of size at the receiver and corner positions, it doesn’t seem to get enough credit for the pending influx of talent at quarterback and tight end. Coming off a year where Kenny Pickett was the only signal caller taken in the first 32 picks, most are expecting four—maybe five—quarterbacks to go in round one. This is also a historic class at tight end where there are probably five or six players who would have ranked atop last year’s position group—and that sets up well for the Rams as Tyler Higbee enters the last year of his contract.

This is no slight against Higbee, who is probably the most productive tight end in Rams franchise history—it’s a fair conclusion based on the team moving away from costly veterans and looking to go cheaper and maintain a more long-term perspective. It’s difficult to picture Higbee returning to Los Angeles after his contract expires this season, and if they Rams come away from the draft with a top TE it might benefit them to move on sooner rather than later.

Why moving on now makes sense:

After acquiring Hunter Long from the Miami Dolphins as part of the Jalen Ramsey trade, LA could quickly face a log jam in terms of playing time at the position. Selecting a tight end in the first three rounds would leave Los Angeles with four players on the depth chart. The Rams predominantly play in 11 personnel (1 RB, 1 TE, 3 WR’s), so without a considerable shift to more 12 personnel packages (1 RB, 2 TE’s, 2 WR’s) it’d be difficult for the rookie to get much meaningful playing time. With a year on his contract and a productive career, Higbee could quickly become the odd man out in this group.

This team was so special because every player seized their opportunity. TE Brycen Hopkins is yet another great example, on the grandest stage. 47 yards on 4 receptions and critical block on 4th down for Cooper Kupp. Great performance & way to seize the moment @Itsbhop89! pic.twitter.com/8WYQLXAoY0

(Video) EVERY Team's Best Value Pick of the 2023 Draft @BrettKollmann

— RAMS ON FILM (@RamsOnFilm) February 15, 2022

With the McVay coaching tree sprouting branches across the NFL, perhaps there is a former assistant that has worked with Higbee and could use his reliable presence on his new team. Think Zac Taylor with the Cincinnati Bengals—they just lost Hayden Hurst to free agency this spring and are slated to start the oft-injured Irv Smith. Matt LaFleur and the Green Bay Packers are looking to build around a young quarterback in Jordan Love and could use all the veteran help they can get.

Moving on from Higbee would leave the Rams with Brycen Hopkins, who the Rams selected in the fourth round back in 2020, Long, and potentially a top rookie from this draft class. Los Angeles reportedly had Long graded as a third round prospect when he was drafted back in 2021. This group would certainly be unproven but would not lack talent and the ability to grow with the rest of a younger roster. Trading away Higbee before the start of 2023 would embrace the youth movement and allow the next nucleus to start developing.

Which top tight ends make sense for Rams in the Draft?

Blaine Grisak’s Snead’s Snacks: Tight ends who could replace Higbee

Who will go in the first round?

LA isn’t slated to make their first pick until the second round and 36 overall, though knowing general manager Les Snead and the fact the Rams have an almost-100 pick gap in rounds four and five there’s a strong potential they could move back.

Dalton Kincaid and Michael Mayer are considered the top two prospects in this year’s tight end class, and most mock drafts have included these two players. Kincaid might be the best overall pass catcher in the entire draft class due to the lack of size at the receiver position. Mayer is a well-rounded blocker and receiver, though he won’t wow you with his athleticism or ability to stretch the field.

Utah TE Dalton Kincaid had himself a day against USC.

Here are all 16 catches (on 16 targets) by Kincaid. pic.twitter.com/P5t5TG4bdv

— Marcus Mosher (@Marcus_Mosher) April 22, 2023
(Video) 2023 FULL First Round Mock Draft: Daniel Jeremiah 4.0

Georgia’s Darnell Washington is another player that could be taken in the first 31 picks, as his 6-7, 264 lbs. frame and relatively athletic profile makes him a unique prospect. His ceiling projects as a sixth offensive lineman and someone who can create mismatches in the intermediate and red zone passing game.

Who’s left for Los Angeles at 36?

Top size/speed combo at @seniorbowl? It was Oregon State TE Luke Musgrave, who had 16th fastest max speed (20.05 mph) of any player…AT 255 lbs! Next heaviest who ran faster was Cincy LB Ivan Pace Jr (20.58 at 231 lbs). Trusted sources think Musgrave could run 4.4 at Combine. pic.twitter.com/qa3xtXm3WA

(Video) The Official 2023 NFL Power Rankings (Post Draft Edition!) || TPS

— Jim Nagy (@JimNagy_SB) February 11, 2023

Luke Musgrave from Oregon State is the nephew of NFL offensive assistant coach Bill Musgrave. On paper Musgrave is a rare blend of size and athleticism, but his college career was marred with injuries—he played only two games during his last season.

South Dakota State’s Tucker Kraft isn’t as dynamic of a pass catcher as the names in front of him, but he’d still be ranked ahead of any of the names drafted in 2022 if he were a member of that draft class: Trey McBride, Cade Otton, and Greg Dulcich. Kraft had six-figure NIL offers from some of the top college programs but decided to remain in South Dakota where he thrived in both the run and pass game.

At 6-5 & 254 lbs, South Dakota State TE Tucker Kraft is No. 51 overall on @dpbrugler’s big board. He received an offer from Alabama to transfer in 2021, but stayed close to home. Kraft comes from a small town of 509 people & didn’t get much exposure in the 2019 recruiting class. pic.twitter.com/VIkBh2x17E

— Kyle Lindemann (@LuckIsMadeFF) April 19, 2023

We know the Rams like Wisconsin offensive linemen, and perhaps there’s no safer bet than tight ends from Iowa. Dallas Clark, George Kittle, TJ Hockenson, and Noah Fant are some of the top former Hawkeyes, and Sam LaPorta could be the next household name from that group. Most rankings have LaPorta as the sixth member of this year’s crop, but this doesn’t do his skillset justice. He accumulated over 100 catches and 1,200 yards over his last two college seasons despite quarterback and overall offensive struggles. LaPorta might not have the star potential of Musgrave or Kraft, but he could step in as a capable starter almost immediately.

Sam LaPorta got a Beast Mode gear. Daaaaaaamn. pic.twitter.com/Xzn4aGmO3r

— Adam Best (@Arrowhead_Adam) April 22, 2023
(Video) 2023 NFL Draft - How Did Every Team Do?

Names to watch in round three and later:

Michigan’s Luke Schoonmaker is one of the top blockers at the position. At 6-5, 251 lbs. and with a 4.63 40-yard dash, it seems he has the athletic profile to become a mismatch in the passing game—though that’s mostly a projection at this point.

Josh Whyle of Cincinnati is a relatively undersized pass catcher that could make an impact from the jump as a role player and situational contributor. At 6-6, 248 lbs., Whyle excels in the short and intermediate areas of the field and runs aggressively after the catch. It’s unlikely that he will become an every down contributor in an offense that asks him to block regularly, and he’ll already be 24 by the time the 2023 season rolls around.

TE Josh Whyle from @GoBearcatsFB is 6’6 and 260 pounds. He scored 15 TDs the last three seasons pic.twitter.com/w4aQqaV2jp

— Barroom Network (@BarroomNetwork) February 2, 2023


How many picks do the Rams have in 2023? ›

Los Angeles Rams Draft Picks Tracker by Round in 2023

The Rams had an impressive 14 draft picks in the 2023 NFL Draft. Three of those selections — a second-rounder and two third-rounders — resided on Day 2. The rest were Day 3 picks, with only one inside the top 150.

What is Tyler Higbee status? ›

Higbee finishes the 2022 season with career highs in targets (108), catches (72) and receiving yards (620) but not touchdowns (three). The tight end turned 30 on New Years Day, and he's under contract with the Rams through 2023.

What number draft picks do the Rams have? ›

The Los Angeles Rams have the 36th overall pick (Round 2) in the NFL Draft when Round 1 begins on April 27 in Kansas City. The Rams own 11 total picks in the seven-round draft.

Who is Rams number 1 receiver? ›

RGZach Thomas
RTRob Havenstein
WRVan JeffersonBen Skowronek
6 more rows

Do the Rams have a 2024 1st round pick? ›

Round 1: The Rams currently hold their own first-round pick in 2024. Assuming they keep the pick, this would mark the first time the Rams have made a first-round pick since they took Jared Goff at No. 1 overall in 2016. Round 2: The Rams currently hold their own second-round pick in 2024.

What are the odds for the Rams to repeat? ›

Los Angeles Rams Super Bowl odds

+6600 to repeat as NFL champions in Super Bowl LVII.

Who to pick up to replace Higbee? ›

Moving on from Higbee would leave the Rams with Brycen Hopkins, who the Rams selected in the fourth round back in 2020, Long, and potentially a top rookie from this draft class.

Is Higbee a good tight end? ›

Tyler Higbee was busy in 2022 but not wildly productive. He finished fourth among tight ends in targets (108) and fifth in receptions (72), but with 620 receiving yards and three touchdowns, he only finished TE9 in fantasy scoring. His first touchdown of the year didn't come until Week 15.

Who is the tight end to replace Higbee? ›

Overview of Pick

Brycen Hopkins has had a quiet career thus far through three seasons. His big moment came in the Super Bowl when he filled in for an injured Tyler Higbee. Hopkins was seen as an athletic tight end coming out of UCF who could be molded into a productive receiver.

What was Cooper Kupp draft pick? ›

The Los Angeles Rams selected Kupp in the third round (69th overall) of the 2017 NFL Draft.

Who has the most draft picks in 2023? ›

Alabama, Georgia lead schools with most picks in 2023 NFL Draft, SEC top conference
CollegePlayers drafted
Ohio State6
Penn State6
7 more rows
Apr 29, 2023

What players did the Rams just pick up? ›

Signed DT Michael Hoecht, CB Shaun Jolly and LB Christian Rozeboom to tendered contracts.

Who is the best player ever on the Rams? ›

The 10 Greatest Rams of All Time
  • of 10. No. 7: Norm Van Brocklin.
  • of 10. No. 6: Kurt Warner.
  • of 10. No. 5: Isaac Bruce.
  • of 10. No. 4: Jackie Slater.
  • of 10. No. 3: Merlin Olsen.
  • of 10. No. 2: David Jones.
  • of 10. No. 1: Jack Youngblood.
  • of 10.

Who is the best Rams WR of all time? ›

The Los Angeles Rams player with the most receiving yards in franchise history is Isaac Bruce with 14,109 yards. This all-time receiving leader is followed by Torry Holt and Henry Ellard with 12,660 yards and 9,761 yards respectively.

Who is the number one best receiver in the NFL? ›

1. Tyreek Hill, Miami Dolphins (2022 PFF grade: 92.1) Tyreek Hill finished with the highest overall PFF grade among wide receivers despite being on a new team and playing with three different quarterbacks in 2022.

Do the LA Rams have any draft picks in 2023? ›

The Los Angeles Rams have nine picks on Day 3 of the 2023 NFL Draft. With their first pick, the Rams added guard Steve Avila out of TCU. After trading back twice and collecting a couple more picks, the Rams then added edge Byron Young from Tennessee with the 77th pick in the third round.

Who has the most 1st round picks NFL 2023? ›

Which Team Has the Most Picks in the 2023 NFL Draft? The Houston Texans and Las Vegas Raiders have 12 picks in the 2023 NFL Draft, leading the NFL. Houston has each of its own picks in Rounds 1 through 4, plus the Cleveland Browns' first- and third-round picks from the Deshaun Watson trade last year.

When was the last time the Rams drafted in the first round? ›

You have to go back to 2016 to find the last time this franchise used a first-round pick in the NFL Draft. The year was 2016 and the team was the Rams.

Who is favored to win the Super Bowl 2023? ›

The Kansas City Chiefs are the favorite in the futures odds for Super Bowl 58. The Chiefs beat the Philadelphia Eagles, 38-35, in Super Bowl 57.

Who is predicted to win Super Bowl 2023? ›

Super Bowl odds 2023-24
TeamJan 22Feb 12
TeamJan 22Feb 12
Kansas City Chiefs+550+600
Buffalo Bills+550+700
San Francisco 49ers+700+750
29 more rows
Feb 12, 2023

What is the spread for the Rams? ›

Rams -4.5 (+110)

Is Tyler Higbee good in fantasy football? ›

Tyler Higbee's Dynasty Outlook and Value

Since then, Higbee has averaged 8.5, 9.8, and 8.9 ppg per season, respectively. Last year, Higbee finished as a high-end TE2 for fantasy. The season started really well with Higbee as a consistent floor-based TE1.

Who to pick up for tight end? ›

Tight End Waiver Wire Pickups - Week 1
#Player NameTeam
1Daniel BellingerNYG
2Cole KmetCHI
3Tyler HigbeeLAR
4Pat FreiermuthPIT
8 more rows

Is Tyler Higbee expected to play today? ›

Rams' TE Tyler Higbee is inactive for tonight's game vs. Chicago.

Who is the best tight end to ever play the game? ›

Rob Gronkowski – Best tight end in NFL history

He ranks second in all-time receiving yards per game (64.9) behind Kelce with the third-most receiving touchdowns (92) ever by a tight end.

Who is the best receiving tight end in the NFL? ›

Tony Gonzalez has the most career receiving yards by a tight end, with 15,127 yards.

Who is the fastest tight end in the NFL? ›

Fastest NFL Combine Tight End Times 2022
Chigoziem OkonkwoMaryland4.52
Jelani WoodsVirginia4.61
Grant CalcaterraSMU4.62
2 more rows

How much does Tyler Higbee make a year? ›

Contract Conundrum #3: Tyler Higbee, TE

In 2023, Tyler Higbee will earn a base salary of $6,250,000, while carrying a cap hit of $9,125,000.

Why didn t Tyler Higbee play? ›

Impact On the Rams' injury report Wednesday, Higbee was listed as a resting player, but after the day off, he returned as a limited participant Thursday due to an elbow issue.

Who will replace Uzomah? ›

This offseason, Uzomah signed with the New York Jets as a free agent, and the Bengals signed Hayden Hurst to replace him as the starting tight end.

How much money does Cooper Kupp make per year? ›

2020-2023. Cooper Kupp signed a 4 year, $3,831,760 contract with the Los Angeles Rams, including a $954,760 signing bonus, $954,760 guaranteed, and an average annual salary of $957,940.

Who was the fastest wide receiver in the draft this year? ›

Nebraska's Trey Palmer finished with the fastest 40-yard dash this year with a 4.33. These WRs are MOVIN'@HuskerFBNation's Trey Palmer with a 4.33u. The current record for fastest 40-yard dash at the Combine is a 4.22, posted by WR John Ross in 2017. Palmer took the crown this year, finishing .

Should I take Cooper Kupp first pick? ›

He is the first wide receiver off the board. He is third overall and the top WR in PFN's consensus 2022 PPR fantasy rankings. If Kupp is on the board, you take him.

Who is Mr irrelevant this year? ›

The Los Angeles Rams closed out the 2023 NFL Draft by using the No. 259 overall pick to select defensive lineman Desjuan Johnson, otherwise known as the new Mr. Irrelevant.

Which college has the most drafted NFL players? ›

Georgia holds the record for most NFL draft selections by a college in a single year since the NFL draft became seven rounds in 1994, setting the mark at 15 players in 2022. 2004 Miami tied 2021 Alabama for the record for most first-round picks at six.

Who is most likely to get first pick in NBA draft 2023? ›

1 to Spurs in first projections following trade deadline. It's been assumed for many months now that the first two picks of the 2023 NBA Draft will be French sensation Victor Wembanyama and G-League Ignite star Scoot Henderson. That remains true.

What key players did the Rams lose? ›

Entering Week 12, at a record of 3-7, the LA Rams have already lost both WR Cooper Kupp and QB Matthew Stafford. While no decision has been made, the wise pact almost dictates that the team shuts down both players for the rest of this season.

How many Rams players are from Texas? ›

While the Rams do not currently have any former Texas Longhorns players, the Cincinnati roster boasts two.

What players did LA Rams lose? ›

The team did lose noteworthy players, however, with Von Miller, Darious Williams, Sebastian Joseph-Day and Austin Corbett all signing elsewhere in addition to those already mentioned. PFF failed to mention and seems to have forgotten what was arguably LA's most notable signing.

Who was the best Rams quarterback ever? ›

1Jim Everett46-59-0
2Marc Bulger41-54-0
3Roman Gabriel74-39-6
4Jared Goff42-27-0
10 more rows

Who is the best Rams quarterback of all time? ›

The LA Rams have two quarterbacks with a Super Bowl win: Kurt Warner and just a season ago, Matthew Stafford. The LA Rams also won NFL championships (before the NFL Super Bowl era) in 1945 and 1951, with quarterbacks Bob Waterfield and Norm Van Brocklin.

Who was the most famous quarterback for the Rams? ›

NFL.com ranked the best 66 quarterbacks to ever start a Super Bowl and four Rams landed on the list. Kurt Warner is the highest-ranked Ram at No. 22 in the "in (or should be in) the Hall-Of-Fame" category.

Who was the best WR with Tom Brady? ›

1 Best: Randy Moss

While Moss didn't win a Super Bowl with the team, he helped the team remain a contender and always in the mix. His chemistry with Brady was perfect, and he remains the best receiver the quarterback has ever played with.

Who is most popular player for LA Rams? ›

Quarterback Matthew Stafford's first season with the Rams led to his highest ranking by his peers. Stafford checked in at No. 27 on the NFL Top 100 Players of 2022, besting No.

Who is the fastest NFL player? ›

Seahawks WR DK Metcalf tells Colin Cowherd that he is the fastest player in the league. Metcalf, however, may face competition from one of his own teammates, cornerback Tariq Woolen. A breakout rookie last season, Woolen ran a 4.26 40-yard dash at the 2022 NFL Combine.

Who is the best RB in the NFL? ›

Best Running Backs in the NFL 2023: Christian McCaffrey, Nick Chubb, and Derrick Henry Battle Atop Rankings.

Who is the best corner in the NFL? ›

Who's the Best Cornerback in the NFL? The New York Jets' Sauce Gardner is the best cornerback in the NFL today. It's difficult to think of many times a rookie cornerback entered the league and immediately became the best player at their position, but Gardner has managed it.

What NFL team has the most picks in 2023? ›

Which team has the most picks in the 2023 NFL Draft? The Green Bay Packers, Houston Texans and Las Vegas Raiders are tied for the most 2023 draft picks with 12 apiece. They are actually three of 10 teams with double-digit picks.

How many draft picks do the Rams have in 2024? ›

That makes for 11 total picks, including all their picks in rounds one through six.

Who has the most picks in NFL 2023? ›

Alabama and Georgia tied with 10 picks each in the 2023 NFL Draft, leading all other schools. Here's what you need to know: Michigan was next in line with nine picks and TCU was third with eight.

Which NFL team has the best chance to win Super Bowl 2023? ›

Those teams are the Eagles (+275 to win the NFC/+700 to win the Super Bowl), 49ers (+350/+900), Cowboys (+650/+1600), and Lions (+850/+2000).

What NFL team has the hardest schedule 2023? ›

What NFL team has the hardest schedule for 2023: Based on projected win totals, the New England Patriots have the hardest strength of schedule for the 2023 NFL season.

Who was Mr irrelevant 2023? ›

Mr. Irrelevant history
2023Desjuan JohnsonRams
2022Brock Purdy49ers
2021Grant StuardBuccaneers
2020Tae CrowderGiants
44 more rows
Apr 30, 2023

Who will be 1 pick in NFL draft 2023? ›

Draft Picks 2023: All the Results From the First Round. The Carolina Panthers selected Bryce Young, the Alabama quarterback, at No. 1 overall. Other teams shook up the top 10 with trades. Here's a full list of the results from the first round on Thursday.

Why did Miami forfeit their pick? ›

The NFL has suspended Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross and fined him $1.5 million for tampering with Tom Brady and Sean Payton following a six-month investigation stemming from Brian Flores' racial discrimination lawsuit against the league.

What do you get for being Mr. Irrelevant? ›

The honoree also receives the Lowsman Trophy, intended to be the exact opposite of the Heisman Trophy, showing a player fumbling a football. After being selected as Mr. Irrelevant, Irrelevant Week, the organization behind the award, says the player will spend a week attending events held in Newport Beach, California.

Have Rams reached the 53 man roster limit? ›

According to OverTheCap.com, the Rams currently having only 45 players under contract means they'd be one of just two NFL team unable to field a 53-man roster if the regular season started today. The club with the next-fewest signed players is the Seahawks, who have 52 players currently under contract.

When was the last time the Rams had a first round draft pick? ›

The Rams did not have a first-round NFL draft pick again this season, last one coming in 2016 with the No. 1 pick of Jared Goff, but they did select a whopping 14 players over the last two days.

Who has the easiest NFL schedule 2023? ›

The easiest schedules: Falcons (.417), Saints (.427), Texans (.431), Colts (.434), Titans (.448).

What college has the most NFL players drafted? ›

Ohio State

Ohio State also came out of the 2023 NFL Draft with the distinction of having produced the most first-round picks ever (90).


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