From there, Countess spent two additional seasons with the club, splitting time between cornerback and safety as a flex reserve off the bench. Though he never quite made it into the starting lineup with much regularity, starting four games over 37 appearances, the Rams valued his contributions enough to offer him a $2 million tender to remain with the team in 2019 as a restricted free agent.
However, after the draft, his standings quickly changed.
After selecting two safeties, Taylor Rapp and Nicholas Scott in the 2019 NFL Draft, drafting John Johnson in 2018, and signing Eric Weddle in free agency, the Rams’ brass asked Countess to take a pay cut to remain on the roster moving forward; a proposition he declined according to Ian Rapoport.
Was the move initially panned? Sure, many didn’t have Countess as a draftable player coming out of college, including NFL.com contributor Lance Zierlein , who gave him a ‘Back end of the roster‘ grade, but after trading away incumbent starter Byron Maxwell to the Miami Dolphins and only replacing him with Jim Schwartz lifers Leodis McKelvin and Ron Brooks, the team was in need of cornerback help badly.
Though some initially pondered which player would make the team, as Mills had issues both off the field and with measurables, the LSU product clearly won out and has remained a starter on the team to this day.
Countess, on the other hand, was offered a spot on the practice squad after initially being waived in the trim down to 53, but he declined; instead heading west to join the Los Angeles Rams, where he was elevated to the active roster on November 18, 2016.
Now granted, as mentioned in the above tweet, Countess could return to LA if he clears waivers and agrees to a lower contract, but after failing to select a safety in the 2019 NFL Draft, Howie Roseman shouldn’t let that happen.
While one could argue who has a higher upside between Countess or 2018 fourth-round pick Avonte Maddox, another pint-sized college corner turned safety, it’s clear having both players on the roster behind all-world utility man Malcolm Jenkins and the oft-injured Rodney McLeod would give the team more depth and optionality than just sticking with what they already have.
Detroit resident Nicholas Scott told The Daily prior to the event Yang is his first choice in this election cycle.
“He’s the only candidate with a lot of policy positions I absolutely agree with and even some policy positions I don’t even know about, and I hear him talk about (them) and I think ‘Of course,’” Scott said. “The other day, I saw his appearance on something and they asked him about pennies and how he wants to get rid of the penny because it’s bad for the environment and worthless. I never thought about the penny and I thought ‘Jesus, we need to make this man president.’”
Scott said climate change is always his primary concern, but Yang’s policy proposal of Universal Basic Income, which would give Americans over the age of 18 years old $1,000 per month, has become an important policy idea for him.
“Climate change is number one, always,” Scott said. “After that, maybe UBI. UBI fixes so much about welfare, and it’s politically popular on both sides of the aisle which is incredible for a welfare safety net program.”
Paul Bartlett, founder of Yang’s Metro Detroit campaign office, introduced Yang to the crowd. He got involved with Yang’s campaign after listening to a podcast Yang was featured on. He said he was amazed by the number of policy ideas he found on Yang’s website.