LOS ANGELES (AP) — Linebacker Dante Fowler has re-signed with the Los Angeles Rams http://www.texansauthorizedshops.com/authentic-kahale-warring-jersey , passing up a shot at unrestricted free agency to stay with the NFC champions.The Rams announced a deal Sunday night to keep Fowler, but didn’t disclose the terms.The Rams acquired Fowler in a trade with Jacksonville on Oct. 30, and the edge rusher played a significant role in Los Angeles’ run to the Super Bowl. The 2015 No. 3 overall pick had two sacks in the regular season and 1 ½ more in the playoffs while creating consistent pressure on quarterbacks.Fowler would have been one of the top pass rushers on the market, but he clearly enjoyed his experience in Wade Phillips’ defense after an up-and-down career with the Jaguars.Fowler, a St. Petersburg native and University of Florida star, had spent his entire life in Florida before the Rams traded a third-round draft pick this year and a fifth-round pick in 2020 to acquire him. Fowler immediately took to his new team, embracing a pass-rushing role in Phillips’ 3-4 defense and fitting in quickly with his new teammates.Rather than chasing free-agent riches Cullen Gillaspia Jersey , Fowler decided to extend his West Coast stay for at least another season — and he may have decided several weeks ago.“We’ll be ready next year,” Fowler said immediately after the Rams’ 13-3 loss to New England in the Super Bowl last month.After going 13-3 and reaching their first Super Bowl in 17 years, the Rams have already addressed two of their biggest offseason concerns before free agency opens.Los Angeles signed six-time Pro Bowl safety Eric Weddle on Friday, likely replacing Lamarcus Joyner with one of the top available talents. Weddle is returning to his native Southern California to join Aqib Talib, Marcus Peters and John Johnson in the Rams’ secondary.Rams defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh and cornerback Sam Shields also are scheduled to be unrestricted free agents. The Rams haven’t ruled out bringing back both veterans, and Suh took a likely discount a year ago for the chance to earn his first career playoff victories by signing with Los Angeles. The Bengals resolved their biggest offseason question when they gave coach Marvin Lewis a two-year extension through 2019 on Tuesday, providing him yet another chance – a 16th Tytus Howard Jersey , actually – to try to get a playoff win.
There are a lot of issues to work through before they can even think in those terms.
The contract extension came after two days of discussions between Lewis and owner Mike Brown about how the franchise has to change.
It’s unclear if Brown – a traditionalist who likes to stay with the familiar, including head coaches – will cede much control to Lewis.
Lewis has been the head coach for the past 15 seasons – the second-longest active tenure in the NFL to New England’s Bill Belichick – and was the key to changing Cincinnati from a down-and-out team to respectability.
He hasn’t been able to take it to that next step – win a playoff game. Lewis is 0-7 in the playoffs, the worst coaching mark in NFL history. He wanted to make sure that he and Brown were on the same page about making changes coming off a 7-9 season that ended with their stadium half-empty.
Players realized that a coaching change could ripple through everything.
”You’re going to be going with a new head coach, it could be a completely new staff … there’s just a lot of uncertainty with that,” quarterback Andy Dalton said. ”I think that’s the biggest thing is just the unknown.”
Instead, Brown decided to stay with what’s familiar. And now, there are some big offseason challenges.
WHO’S COORDINATING? Lewis’ assistants are up for contract renewals Rock Ya-Sin Jersey , too. The biggest question is who will be the offensive coordinator next season. Dalton and the offense were best when Hue Jackson was the coordinator in 2015 – Dalton led the AFC in passer rating. Jackson went to Cleveland, and the offense became less creative and less productive under Ken Zampese, who was fired after an 0-2 start this season. Replacement Bill Lazor was confined by Zampese’s system, but got more out of it. Still, the Bengals finished last in the NFL in offense for only the second time in club history. They need a coordinator who can redesign and rejuvenate the offense.
WHAT ABOUT THE O-LINE? The Bengals knew that the offensive line was going to be a work in progress with two inexperienced tackles. It was far worse than they’d hoped, unable to protect Dalton or open holes for a running game that was the worst in club history. The offensive line is the first focus of the offseason.
DALTON’S BACKUP: The Bengals have been fortunate at quarterback, with Dalton avoiding significant injury over his career. The one time he got hurt – a broken thumb near the end of the 2015 season – AJ McCarron took over and led the team into the playoffs http://www.coltsauthorizedshops.com/authentic-ben-banogu-jersey , giving them a sense of comfort should Dalton go down.
McCarron’s contract is up, and there’s a dispute over whether he’s a restricted free agent – which gives the club some control – or unrestricted, which means he can go wherever he wants. McCarron wants to start somewhere, and he knows that it won’t be in Cincinnati. A ruling on his status will come down mid-February and set everything in motion.
WHAT TO DO ABOUT BURFICT? The Bengals’ most valuable defensive player was again one of its least dependable because of suspension, ejection and injuries.
Linebacker Vontaze Burfict’s no-holds-barred style of play got him another three-game suspension, an in-game ejection, and a series of injuries Khari Willis Jersey , limiting him to 10 games. He finished with only 1+ sacks. In 2016, he missed five games because of suspension and injury. He’s not going to change his style of play, which means the defense is never sure how much it can count on him week to week.
THE FANS: Attendance dropped significantly at Paul Brown Stadium, which was half-empty for the final game. The Bengals aren’t going to sell tickets until fans are convinced that significant changes are on the way. How do the Bengals get them back while bringing back Lewis?