LOS ANGELES -- The Rams, desperate for all the help they can get on offense, addressed two of their most pressing needs on Thursday, signing veteran left tackle Andrew Whitworth and former USC receiver Robert Woods to multiyear contracts.
Agreements were in place shortly after sunrise on the West Coast, and the team formally announced the deals about three hours after the new league year began, although terms were not revealed.
Whitworth, 35, gets a three-year, $36 million contract that will guarantee him $15 million, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter. Woods, still a month away from his 25th birthday, gets a five-year deal that maxes out at $39 million and guarantees $15 million.
Whitworth and Woods are expected to address the media in a news conference at 2 p.m. PT on Friday.
Woods essentially replaces Kenny Britt, who joined the Cleveland Browns on a four-year, $32.5 million contract. Adding Whitworth means Greg Robinson, the No. 2 overall pick from 2014, will move to the right side, either to guard or tackle.
Whitworth is now tasked with protecting the blind side of franchise quarterback Jared Goff, who faced the NFL's third-highest blitz rate in 2016 and was sacked 25 times over his last six games.
Whitworth, who spent his previous 11 seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals, is the NFL's oldest left tackle but is still considered one of its elite pass-blockers. He has been invited to the Pro Bowl three times, including each of the past two seasons, and was first-team All-Pro as recently as 2015. In 2016, Pro Football Focus graded him the NFL's second-best tackle.
That year, he allowed only one sack after Week 5.
Over the past two seasons, Pro Football Focus had the 6-foot-7, 330-pound Whitworth allowing a combined 38 pressures, two fewer than what Robinson allowed in 2016 alone.
The Rams targeted Whitworth early on, pursuing him both for his blocking and for his leadership. They'll guarantee him $12.5 million in the first year of his contract and $2.5 million in the second.
Woods was born and raised in L.A. and starred at USC, where he still holds the school record for career receptions.
Over the next two seasons, he once again will play his home games at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.
The Buffalo Bills made Woods a second-round pick in 2013 and used him primarily as a No. 2 receiver his first four seasons. Woods amassed 203 catches for 2,451 yards and 12 touchdowns while playing in 57 of 64 games, ranking 55th in receiving yards over that stretch. In 2016, he made 51 catches for 613 yards and a touchdown in 13 games.
Woods, 6 feet tall, isn't considered a dynamic playmaker and doesn't necessarily boast the explosiveness to stretch the field vertically. But the Rams -- with limited cap space after franchising cornerback Trumaine Johnson for a second straight year -- like Woods' route-running ability, reliable hands and physicality. They'll use him alongside Tavon Austin, a 5-foot-8 speedster who struggles in the areas where Woods is strong.
The Rams, last in the NFL in yards each of the past two seasons, still need more help at receiver and may now need a center after informing Tim Barnes of his release on Thursday.
But their two biggest needs have been addressed.