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  1. #1
    AvengerRam's Avatar
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    The Jason Smith Question

    Let me start this by saying that I believe it is WAY too early to presume that the Rams' OT spots are etched in stone at this point.

    However, to address a potential outcome of the "battle" between Jason Smith and Roger Saffold, I ask you this:

    If Jason Smith does not become the starting LT but, instead, becomes one of the best RT in the league over the next 6-8 years, how would you rate his career?

    For the second pick in the draft is it "LT or bust"?

    Is it more about him having a long, productive, career at either tackle spot?

    Somewhere in between?

    What are your thoughts?


  2. #2
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    Re: The Jason Smith Question

    My thoughts.

    From a financial standpoint, Smith is being paid as an elite LT. If he does not become the starting LT, he could be described as overpaid (not to mention how it might impact Saffold if he becomes the LT at his much lower salary).

    However, if he becomes an upper-tier RT for several years, there is no way I'd call him a "bust." To me, that label applies to a player who is not productive, not to a player who is productive in a somewhat less important spot than anticipated.

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    Re: The Jason Smith Question

    Quote Originally Posted by AvengerRam View Post
    My thoughts.

    From a financial standpoint, Smith is being paid as an elite LT. If he does not become the starting LT, he could be described as overpaid (not to mention how it might impact Saffold if he becomes the LT at his much lower salary).

    However, if he becomes an upper-tier RT for several years, there is no way I'd call him a "bust." To me, that label applies to a player who is not productive, not to a player who is productive in a somewhat less important spot than anticipated.
    I would have to agree with you on that AV. I don't believe that specific money needs to be paid to a player 'just' because he plays from a specific position. That can cause a lot of problems. I think the money should go to the most deserving player at what ever position is providing the most impact. An RT can potentially have just as much impact as an LT. So if we paid that position more then I expect to get my moneys worth and that player to play up to his financial gain.

    Good Question

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    TylerBishop is offline Registered User
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    Re: The Jason Smith Question

    Not a bust at all if he is elite, and the only reason he's not on the left is because Saffold is a stud. But, after his contract is up in likelyhood we would loose him to another team looking for a LT if he is indeed that good.

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    Re: The Jason Smith Question

    I wouldn't lock him in as a career RT right now either. We knew when we drafted him that he was a little raw and going to be a bit of a project. His upside is what we drafted him for, and if he makes major strides at RT this year I wouldn't be surprised if we revisit putting him on the left side next year.

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    Re: The Jason Smith Question

    Doesn't bother me a bit. Glass is half full thinking says we stole a LT. (We may have to pay in the future, however).
    I think we run to the right more than to the left, and that seems to be Smith's strong suit.

    On the "I wonder" side, I'd like to see stats on QB injuries recieved on one side vs. the other. Gut reaction, the term "blindsided" conjures up all kinds of dreadful images, but is it really true?

    In the days of spearing, headslaps and knee shots, I'd agree, but these days I'm not so certain. Also, for a right handed QB, escape is to his right, and he's not going to break his finger on the LDE's helmet. So far, Bradford seems to have a decent clock in his head, (which should get better after he gets whacked a few times).
    On the other hand, particularly with Bradford, the LDE can do the most damage to his throwing shoulder.

    Again, just food for thought.
    "the Heart Lies and the Head Plays Tricks with us, but the Eyes See True".

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    AvengerRam's Avatar
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    Re: The Jason Smith Question

    Quote Originally Posted by VegasRam View Post
    Doesn't bother me a bit. Glass is half full thinking says we stole a LT.
    I think we run to the right more than to the let, and that seems to be smith's strong suit.

    On the "I wonder" side, I'd like to see stats on QB injuries recieved on one side vs. the other. Gut reaction, the term "blindsided" conjures up all kinds of dreadful images, but is it really true?
    In the days of spearing, headslaps and knee shots, I'd agree, but these days I',m not so certain. Also, fora right haanded QB, escape is to his right, and he's not going to break his finger on the LDE's helmet. So far, Bradford seems to have a decent clock in his head, (which should get better after he gets whacked a few times).
    On the other hand, particularly with Bradford, the LDE can do the most damage to his throwing shoulder.

    Again, just food for thought.
    Good points. Also, the elite DEs tend to play the left side, so having a strong RT is very important.

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    Re: The Jason Smith Question

    I would say not a bust, but I would still be disappointed in finding out that he cannot be a LT because it would mean that other teams draft and seem to automatically have success and we dont

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    Re: The Jason Smith Question

    Quote Originally Posted by rNemesis View Post
    I would say not a bust, but I would still be disappointed in finding out that he cannot be a LT because it would mean that other teams draft and seem to automatically have success and we dont
    Ah, but that's just it...........it wouldn't be because he "cannot" but rather becauase Saffold "can" at a higher level.

    What a wonderful problem to have. That is, if Saffold turns out to be so good at LT that Smith must move to RT.


    Actually, the more I think about it, the more excited I get. Where are all the great RTs anyway? Where's all the Willie Andersons, and Leon Searcys, the Jon Jansons and Jon Runyons, the Lincoln Kennedys and the Kyle Turleys (yea, that's right; he was great before he was a Ram)?

    Bring back the bad arse Right Tackle!!! Give the people that smash mouth gladiator, the wreaking ball of the offensive line!
    Give us......Jason Smith!
    Last edited by HUbison; -08-12-2010 at 02:21 PM.
    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

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    Re: The Jason Smith Question

    Guess which side Jackie Slater played?

    (You get two, but the first one doesn't....)

    Oh...and he played mostly special teams for his first three years.
    "the Heart Lies and the Head Plays Tricks with us, but the Eyes See True".

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    Re: The Jason Smith Question

    very good question. and might i add i love the luxury of being able ask such a question!

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    Re: The Jason Smith Question

    If you want to see what has happened to the RT position over the last few years, just check out the player ratings in Madden. I know it's not a great system, but there were times a few years back when you had guys in the high 90s playing the position. In Madden 11, Jon Stinchcomb is a 90 and every one else is rated lower.

    If Saffold plays brilliantly and pushes Smith to the right side, i would have no issue with that. Saffold was a first round talent too, and we were lucky to get him where we did in the draft. To have this conundrum not because one player is bad, but because two players are good, is something the Rams haven't had in a long time. That is provided that both Smith and Saffold play well. If Smith performs poorly, then he gets the bust tag. If he becomes a regular Pro Bowler, then he won't have to worry and i should think any questions about his draft position will be ignored.

    I think any Rams fan that has watched the team over the last few years has been longing for the team to pick up a regular RT. We have tried so many different players at the position and most have been nothing more then a minor nuisence. If Smith plays RT and plays well for years to come, it definitely would not have been a bad draft pick to have taken him 2nd overall.

    Its not like he is doing a Robert Gallery and bumping inside to Guard because he cant play tackle.

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    Azul e Oro is online now Registered User
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    Re: The Jason Smith Question

    [QUOTE=HUbison;351426]
    What a wonderful problem to have. That is, if Saffold turns out to be so good at LT that Smith must move to RT.

    I think this is the obvious answer to AV's question.

    For the record, I don't think Saffold will stay on the left. It made sense to keep him there when Smith buggered his toe early this year. Smith can ease back in at RT more easily than the total rookie could convert but ultimately I think the talent that got Smith picked at #2 will tell.Getting some cross training and versatility seems a more likely, albeit more modest, dividend from an awkward situation than a permanent swap to me.

  14. #14
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    Re: The Jason Smith Question

    I'd say that he ought to be evaluated on how well he plays regardless of where they put him. If he plays at an elite level, and it just so happens that the Rams have stumbled onto another elite tackle who happens to be a slightly better fit on the left, then the Rams fan base should be rejoicing that the end to our offensive line woes may now be in sight. The only way I would really be bothered if Smith stayed on the right would be if we had ongoing problems on the left, and the coaches hesitated to switch him over there.

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    Re: The Jason Smith Question

    If Smith end up on the right side, he has to be considered a bust.

    The idea that he would be the top RT in the league and the #2 pick in the draft and not leave the rams come end of contract for a LT gig and contract is the problem. Look at what Jared Gaither went through in the offseason and he was a 5th round pick.

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