The Los Angeles Rams have struck a deal with the Atlanta Falcons to trade Van Jefferson, their wide receiver. In exchange for a sixth-round pick in the 2024 NFL Draft, the Rams will be giving up Jefferson and a seventh-round pick along with him.
The deadline of the NFL Trade is looming closer, earmarked for October 31st, and this move by the Rams is amongst the first to take the spotlight. Jefferson’s addition to the Falcons will bolster their wide receiver lineup, which needed an enhancement.
Jefferson has been a significant asset to the Rams during his four-year stint with them, accumulating over 1,499 yards with 101 receptions and 10 touchdowns to his credit. He was also part of the Super Bowl LVI-winning team. However, despite his contributions, the Rams are currently placed third in the NFC West, led by the undefeated San Francisco 49ers.
The Falcons’ offense stands to benefit immensely from Jefferson’s arrival. Currently, they rank as the sixth-lowest scoring team in the NFL, averaging a meager 16.6 points per game. More specifically, their passing offense which averages 195 air yards per match needs a serious uplift. This season, the Falcons have split their victories and losses neatly, claiming all three wins at home while experiencing both defeats on the road.
Despite a run-heavy approach to the offense, the Falcons largely depend on rookie Bijan Robinson and Tyler Allgeier’s rushing pair. Adding to their trouble is an underperforming squad of wide receivers coupled with a tight end and running back tied for leading the team in receptions.
Quarterback Desmond Ridder, however, seems to perform better at the dome-styled Mercedes-Benz Stadium, given the heightened average of 23.3 points per home game as opposed to 6.5 on the road.
With Jefferson’s transfer, the field will witness him overtaking veterans Mack Hollins and KhaDarel Hodge to assume the WR #2 position behind London. This comes at an opportune moment, as Hollins and Hodge have only combined for 13 catches in this season.
Back in Los Angeles, Jefferson’s trade was catalyzed by Cooper Kupp’s return to the Rams following an injury. The conspicuous rise of rookie wide receiver Puka Nacua further compounded the issue and made Jefferson the odd player out.
Looking to secure a spot in the playoffs through the NFC South, the Falcons see a clear route to achieving this goal. With three teams with three wins each dominating the NFC South and the division winner slated for an automatic playoff berth, the Falcons are hopeful.
On this note, the Falcons seem to have a relatively advantageous schedule for the remaining season. As things stand, Tampa Bay Buccaneers are heading the NFC South with a 3-1 record, while both the Falcons and New Orleans Saints are tied for the second spot. All eyes are now on the Falcons, who are set to leverage their new acquisition and seize their path to the postseason.