The New England Patriots have traded running back Sony Michel to the Los Angeles Rams. The deal, confirmed on Wednesday, will net the Pats a couple of draft picks.
While the Patriots didn’t reveal the compensation, the reports say that the Rams are sending fifth-round and sixth-round conditional 2022 draft picks to New England in exchange for the 26-year-old running back. The two picks can turn into a fourth-rounder in case the team from Los Angeles gets a fourth-round compensation pick next year.
The Patriots’ chances of ending up with a better pick are significantly high, considering that the Rams are in line to get a fourth-round selection after losing safety John Johnson in this year’s free agency.
Sony Michel started 28 games for New England since being picked in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft by the Pats. Michel performed well in his first two years with the franchise but had a down year in 2020 after struggling with various injuries. This prompted the Patriots to decline the fifth-year option on his deal and start shopping him at the start of the offseason.
Another reason why New England didn’t mind parting ways with Michel was the team’s depth on the RB position. They entered the training camp with six running backs, including 2019’s third-round pick Damien Harris, who stepped in after Michel went down, veteran James White, and rookie Rhamondre Stevenson.
The Rams, on the other hand, were looking at ways to add running backs to their roster after last year’s standout performer Cam Akers tore his Achilles and was ruled out for the season. The team didn’t have much behind Akers, with 2019’s third-round pick Darrell Henderson Jr. being their only other viable option.