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  1. #1
    Barry Waller is offline Registered User
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    Early Round One Viewpoint

    Again, it's quite early, but I'm assuming a couple things from what I seein this draft pool.

    Firstly, you will see an early run on QBs, though the exact ranking order still is to be determined, and in the end, it could be more about whether a QB fits a system better than another, or whether the Txans REALLy want Johnny Manziel to stay in Texas.

    Secondly, like last, year, with a dearth of super blue chip "skill" talent except at QB perhaps, you are going to see three or four offensive tackles taken in the top 10.


    The Rams look to be picking somewhere from fifth to seventh with the Redskins pick, barring some great run against a tough remaining schedule by the Redskins.

    Looking at the top tier talent, there doesn't appear to be a cornerback, safety, or defensive tackle that would merit a pick there by the Rams.

    However, the very GOOD news, for the Rams, other than maybe some crazy overpay by a team to move up for a QB, is that it's virtually assured that they will have a chance to draft one of the top three linebackers, all a good fit, and all rated among the top 10 to 12 players overall in this draft


    Other than taking the safe route with Jake Matthews, if he remains on the board when the Rams first pick, it would seem to me a slam dunk that Anthony Barr, C.J. Mosely, or Khalil Mack should end up being the pick.

    And sorry, endless rookie WR lovers, But I don't see Mike Evans or Sammie Watkins as a better bet, better option to help the Rams, as those linebackers or Mathews.


    Chances are, when the Rams own pick comes around, that trio of OLB will be gone. If the Rams think Ryan Shazier or Kyle Van Noy, the next best OLB, are close to that first trio, they could look at a deal down far more in earnest.

    However, I would take Barr for certain if given that shot. I see him as better than the other top guys buy a lot.

    If they get Barr or Mosley, then it clearly seems to come down to a CB, S, DT or O-lineman with the next two picks, and the talent at those positions, EXCEPT safety, is solid in depth.

    That's why Haha Clinton Dix, clearly the top safety, is going to be closely watched and scouted by Jeff Fisher and Les Snead. They either take him in round one, or he's gone.

    There are some decent corners who may move up just because of the lack of a top guy, as they always seem to do, but I see none who would be the physical type corner Fisher wants. Trumaine Jonson will probably be a better player in 2014 than any of the CBs here in this draft. Perhaps free agency can see them add a decent veteran corner.

    There should be some very good guards in round two, as always, so I see DT and that safety as likely targets in mid round one, with trade down always a possibility there as well.

    I'm not sure a guy like Louis Nix, more a 3-4 NY type, will be their guy, especially coming off knee surgery.

    However, a smaller, quicker type like Timmy Jernigan, Ego Ferguson, Will Sutton, or R. Hageman might be Fisher's cup of tea with that other Rams pick, IF they don't like the safety, or he is gone already.


    I really see a "defense first" top round for the Rams , and the only defensive players that aren't defensive ends that fit the level of the Rams initial pick are clearly outside linebackers, WEAK SIDE linebackers.

    I would surely listen to trade offers, unless it costs you one of the three LB, and if I can get Barr, I don't trade.

    If I come out of the draft with Barr, and whichever of those DTs works out the best and fits the best, or Clinton-Dix, and then come back with a guard or CB in round two, I'll be a happy draftnik.

    It's all about those Redskins continuing to suck it, which is a great feeling in many ways.

    The best way of course is that it gives the Rams a HUGE chip in a draft with very few impact players.

    Barry Waller

  2. #2
    Nick's Avatar
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    Barry, we have a two-page thread debating the selection of a linebacker with a high first round pick. Since it sounds based on this write-up like you're in favor of it, I'll pose the same question to you as I did when I started the other thread: what does your nickel personnel look like?
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  3. #3
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    RamsFanSam is offline Pro Bowl Ram
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    Re: Early Round One Viewpoint

    The Rams front office has shown a LOT of skill when it comes to deal-making in the draft. Honestly, I would not be surprised to see the Rams show "interest" in one of the QB's, just to generate uneasiness among the teams picking behind us. This would, in effect, make our first pick (from the Redskins) worthy of trade consideration, if team was in desperate need of a QB. It would not shock me to see the Rams trade away this pick for a later first round pick and a second or early third round pick.
    Other than that, I believe you have summed up the probability of our draft very well, as long as unexpected circumstances don't change the needs of the team or the available players in the draft.

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    Re: Early Round One Viewpoint

    I agree 100% Barry. Barr is a superb prospect and would make our front 7 one of the best in the league. His impact would be felt not only in the pass rush, but his run stop as well. He also brings an attitude, plus he can light someone up. He's just barely scratching the surface of his potential.


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  5. #5
    Barry Waller is offline Registered User
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    Re: Early Round One Viewpoint

    In answer to the "nickel package thread. I would say the Rams lack the playesr to play a good nickel anyway, but I would take McDonald out and put a third CB in for him.

    I would leave all three LB in the game and blitz one or two of them on passing downs, or run zone blitzes with Quinn or Long dropping back sometimes.

    The Rams have shown that going with "extra" coverage on third down and in the red zone doesn't work at all for them.

    It also makes for some long third and long or second and long runs, and hasn't helped the completion % at all.

    If you have great coverage linebackers who run like safties, they are fine covering the type short passes the Rams mostly see because of their great pass rush.

    "Gimmick" defenses, like the nickel and dime deals, were invented BECAUSE teams had to hide the fact that their LB couldn't cover anyone. They were the reaction to three or four WR sets.

    Teams won't go "empty backfield against this Rams defense, not with this pass rush, which gets even better with a guy like Barr or Mosely or even Mack

    You also could go with THREE DL, plus that weak side OLB moving up, with Brockers coming out, and an extra CB in for him, or two if McDonald comes out.

    There is always the chance to give Laurinaitis or Ogletree some breathers as well, as they mix things up.

    Certainly ho it effects the nickel shouldn't be an issue to pass up a stud rather than reach for another position that high. You absolutely cannot reach with a top 6 or 7 pick.

    And since this is a very thin "top tier" especially removing the QB, the Rams have a short list of players worthy of that high a selection. It just so happens that two at least are OLB.
    Barry Waller

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    Re: Early Round One Viewpoint

    Quote Originally Posted by Barry Waller View Post
    Certainly ho it effects the nickel shouldn't be an issue to pass up a stud rather than reach for another position that high. You absolutely cannot reach with a top 6 or 7 pick.
    I don't find the 30 front particularly compelling for this personnel, though I think you bring up some good points about staying in a base set in some obvious passing downs due to the athleticism of the OLBs. Still, I'd prefer to solve the OLB issue with other resources since the Rams already have two 'backers they really like as three down players and a lot of quality at defensive end.

    With that said, I agree with what you've said in bold - you absolutely cannot reach for need here. That's why my personally preference would be to take Matthews or another appropriately valued OT or to orchestrate a trade down. I think the Rams would benefit more from a long term franchise LT who can help immediately at another line spot rather than a third albeit incredibly talented linebacker, but that's just my opinion. If the Rams end up taking a LB high in the first round, I'll be very interested to see how they utilize him.

    Thanks for taking the time to respond!

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