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  1. #1
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    Rams are not looking at B.J. Raji in NFL draft

    BY Jim Thomas
    ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
    Wednesday, Apr. 22 2009

    There's no doubt that B.J. Raji can be a beast on the football field. But is he
    also a burden?

    Last season for Boston College, the 6-foot-1, 337-pound defensive tackle
    registered 16 tackles behind the line of scrimmage plus eight sacks. He thus
    became the first Eagles defensive tackle since Mike Ruth in 1985 to lead the
    team in sacks.

    He was paired with equally massive teammate Ron Brace (6-3, 330) at defensive
    tackle, and BC was nearly impossible to budge up the middle, finishing seventh
    in the nation in run defense. Raji complemented his strong 2008 season with a
    dominant week at the Senior Bowl.

    All of which pointed to him being the first defensive lineman taken in the
    draft.

    Raji says the team that drafts him will, "get an overall defensive tackle who
    can do both — get to the quarterback, stop the run. A team leader by example, a
    good guy on and off the field."

    But some off-the-field concerns could make Raji a risky pick. He missed the
    entire 2007 season at Boston College because he was academically ineligible. In
    2006, he reportedly played at more than 350 pounds, so there could be weight
    issues.

    And then there's anger management: He was suspended for half a game in '06 for
    throwing a punch at a Central Michigan player.

    But potentially the most compelling issue came earlier this month with reports
    that Raji had failed a drug test at the NFL Scouting Combine. It was followed
    by subsequent reports that he had not failed a drug test at the combine.
    Whether the initial drug tests are true or false, it cast more doubt on Raji's
    maturity and his ability to be a player teams can count on in the NFL.

    Even so, he still looks to be the first defensive lineman taken in the draft.
    If he falls out of the top 10, it won't be by much.

    There was a time when Raji seemed to factor into potential trade-down scenarios
    for the Rams — scenarios where they traded down only a handful of spots from
    No. 2 overall and stayed in the top 10.

    The Rams have only two defensive tackles on the offseason roster that figure to
    be around on opening day in Clifton Ryan and Adam Carriker. The Rams seemingly
    are still trying to figure out what Carriker is: a nose tackle, a "3-technique"
    tackle, maybe even a defensive end.

    As if to underscore the uncertainty, coach Steve Spagnuolo and defensive
    coordinator Ken Flajole had Carriker and Ryan playing both tackle positions at
    the Rams' April minicamp.

    One of the stated goals of general manager Billy Devaney is to get bigger on
    both sides of the ball, something that is needed on what remains an undersized
    defense.

    But there has been next to nothing in terms of hints that the Rams are
    interested in Raji. Perhaps most telling was the fact that he was not invited
    to Rams Park last week for a pre-draft visit. About half the projected first
    round was invited among the 23 players at Rams Park, but not Raji.

    If Raji indeed failed a drug test at some point in time, whether it was at the
    combine or in college, he might not be on the Rams' draft board at all. During
    a live chat Tuesday on STLtoday.com, Devaney explained his "zero tolerance"
    policy.

    Speaking generally and not on any particular player, Devaney said, "The zero
    tolerance comes into play if they've been convicted of doing something illegal.
    Or they've been involved in illegal substances."

    Raji has denied that he failed a drug test at the combine. Prior to those
    reports surfacing, he was asked how he would answer questions from teams about
    off-field issues.

    "Be honest," he said. "There's nothing to hide."

    Once you get past Raji, the options at nose tackle dwindle. The Rams did have
    defensive tackles Peria Jerry of Mississippi and Ziggy Hood of Missouri in for
    pre-draft visits. But they project as "3-technique" players in the NFL — a
    position that generally calls for quicker, smaller players to shoot gaps and
    penetrate into the backfield.

    If either Jerry or Hood slips into the second round, the Rams would be tempted
    to grab one of them at No. 35 overall. For what it's worth, at Mizzou's March
    19 pro day Rams officials seemed to perk up and pay particular attention to
    Hood as he went through a variety of drills.



  2. #2
    RealRam's Avatar
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    Re: Rams are not looking at B.J. Raji in NFL draft

    B.J. seems to be an "interesting" type of prospect, not much more. If the Rams are not too high on this youngster, I'll sigh in relief. We have our hands full with three other players that are more promising, I believe.

  3. #3
    Azul e Oro is offline Registered User
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    Re: Rams are not looking at B.J. Raji in NFL draft

    "Even so, he still looks to be the first defensive lineman taken in the draft."

    Huh? Does anyone have Raji going before Orakpo? Or is he considered OLB?

    Still, aren't there a number of other DEs that are projected higher?

    Raji is the best DT,certainly, but ...

    Funny how Brace has never seemed to get seriously into the conversation.

  4. #4
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    Re: Rams are not looking at B.J. Raji in NFL draft

    I don't really see how this is news worthy. The Rams aren't interested in drafting me either, but there's no article on it.

  5. #5
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    Re: Rams are not looking at B.J. Raji in NFL draft

    Quote Originally Posted by ScottD413 View Post
    I don't really see how this is news worthy. The Rams aren't interested in drafting me either, but there's no article on it.
    Rams are not looking at ScottD413 in NFL draft
    BY HUbison
    CLANRAM DIS-POTATOPATCH
    Wednesday, Apr. 22 2009

    Though ScottD is eligible for the draft, inside sources tell me that he is not on the Rams radar.
    "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

  6. #6
    KoaKoi is offline Registered User
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    Re: Rams are not looking at B.J. Raji in NFL draft

    Quote Originally Posted by HUbison View Post
    Rams are not looking at ScottD413 in NFL draft
    BY HUbison
    CLANRAM DIS-POTATOPATCH
    Wednesday, Apr. 22 2009

    Though ScottD is eligible for the draft, inside sources tell me that he is not on the Rams radar.
    lol inside sources. love it

  7. #7
    MauiRam's Avatar
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    Re: Rams are not looking at B.J. Raji in NFL draft

    Quote Originally Posted by HUbison View Post
    Rams are not looking at ScottD413 in NFL draft
    BY HUbison
    CLANRAM DIS-POTATOPATCH
    Wednesday, Apr. 22 2009

    Though ScottD is eligible for the draft, inside sources tell me that he is not on the Rams radar.
    This is so typical of "inside sources." C'mon man -- give us the nitty gritty -- did he fail his drug test or what?

  8. #8
    ScottD413's Avatar
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    Re: Rams are not looking at B.J. Raji in NFL draft

    Quote Originally Posted by HUbison View Post
    Rams are not looking at ScottD413 in NFL draft
    BY HUbison
    CLANRAM DIS-POTATOPATCH
    Wednesday, Apr. 22 2009

    Though ScottD is eligible for the draft, inside sources tell me that he is not on the Rams radar.
    ScottD responds to NFL draft sources
    BY ScottD413 DIS-YOMAMMA
    Wednesday, Apr.22 2009

    ScottD is not very happy with the reports that have been surfacing in the news today regarding his NFL draft status. The disgruntled star was quoted this afternoon as saying, "The only reason the Rams aren't interested in taking me with the number two overall pick is because I wont be around then. Everybody knows the Lions are going to take me at number one."

    Why the Detroit Lions would draft an IT worker with little on-field football experience is anybody's guess. Calls to the Lions GM requesting comment were not immedietly returned.
    Last edited by ScottD413; -04-22-2009 at 04:50 PM.

  9. #9
    txramsfan's Avatar
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    Re: Rams are not looking at B.J. Raji in NFL draft

    If a DT lead the team in tackles and sacks, take him. I know the Rams won't but this guy could be a beast. Carriker is out of position (if there is a position for him) and Ryan is just serviceable so far. It starts up front, not at MLB. I think the Rams are making a huge mistake not looking at BJ Raji.

  10. #10
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    Re: Rams are not looking at B.J. Raji in NFL draft

    Other sources (somebody on the PD site) says there's interest in ScottD413 if he's still on the board at #2. They say D413 looks like a great project on offense or defense. Stay tuned.
    The break, don't bend offense.

  11. #11
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    Re: Rams are not looking at B.J. Raji in NFL draft

    I agree with tx . I think there is a bigger ? at DT for the Rams then at OT. Is Carriker even healthy, last report I saw he wasn't 100%. I don't think our problem of stopping the run last year started at LB. Raji would make a lot of people on the D look better.

  12. #12
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    Re: Rams are not looking at B.J. Raji in NFL draft

    I will agree with his supporters.

    If we were somehow able to trade down for extra players, picks and he was available - I think he would be a great pickup.

    I don't see how an anger problem would be a bad thing. We need someone on the other side of the ball to combat Incognito’s issues.

  13. #13
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    Talking Re: Rams are not looking at B.J. Raji in NFL draft

    Quote Originally Posted by HUbison View Post
    Rams are not looking at ScottD413 in NFL draft
    BY HUbison
    CLANRAM DIS-POTATOPATCH
    Wednesday, Apr. 22 2009

    Though ScottD is eligible for the draft, inside sources tell me that he is not on the Rams radar.
    lmao.......

  14. #14
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    Re: Rams are not looking at B.J. Raji in NFL draft

    Quote Originally Posted by ScottD413 View Post
    ScottD responds to NFL draft sources
    BY ScottD413 DIS-YOMAMMA
    Wednesday, Apr.22 2009

    ScottD is not very happy with the reports that have been surfacing in the news today regarding his NFL draft status. The disgruntled star was quoted this afternoon as saying, "The only reason the Rams aren't interested in taking me with the number two overall pick is because I wont be around then. Everybody knows the Lions are going to take me at number one."

    Why the Detroit Lions would draft an IT worker with little on-field football experience is anybody's guess. Calls to the Lions GM requesting comment were not immedietly returned.
    You know, if Matt Millen was still in Detroit i wouldnt be surprised at them taking ScottD413, even with his character concerns

  15. #15
    Azul e Oro is offline Registered User
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    Re: Rams are not looking at B.J. Raji in NFL draft

    Quote Originally Posted by txramsfan View Post
    If a DT lead the team in tackles and sacks, take him. I know the Rams won't but this guy could be a beast. Carriker is out of position (if there is a position for him) and Ryan is just serviceable so far. It starts up front, not at MLB. I think the Rams are making a huge mistake not looking at BJ Raji.
    I think you have to consider that he was playing with Brace beside him & good LBs behind him-Herzlich(?), I heard from a number of BC fans, is especially impressive.

    And the off-field stuff-while probably more of the dumb kid mistake than hardcore bad egg variety & might not kill Raji's chances if we traded down- is enough,imo, to grade him below Curry or even your guy Orakpo if DeSpags decide to go defensive at #2, considering, in no particular order, need, talent, and character .

    It sucks because I did really think the Rams needed to make a serious move on the DL this off season,too. If a name emerges, it seems likely to be a bit of a surprise.

    In DeSpags, we trust, I guess,huh?

    I'm still OT first but a part of me is certainly curious whether taking Curry/Sanchez over an OT would be bold or rash but I'd be more scared than curious if Raji got the nod.
    Last edited by Azul e Oro; -04-23-2009 at 06:43 AM.

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