Final AvengerRam Draft Board (Top 20), With Commentary
Here are my final pre-draft rankings, using my combined Player Rating/Ram Need formula, as follows:
5 - Blue Chip Player: Regarded as "can't miss" prospect.
4 - Clear First Rounder: Confident that player will succeed.
3 - Marginal First Rounder: Needs to be in right system; possible second rounder.
2 - First Round Reach: Flaw in game should keep out of first round.
1 - Not a First Rounder: Should not be selected in first round.
Position – Level of Need (Rams):
5 - Immediate Need: Draft choice likely to be a starter as rookie.
4 - Future Need: Draft choice will likely be starter w/in 3 years.
3 - Depth Postion: Draft choice will provide depth at key position/may platoon with starter.
2 - Luxury Position: Not a need position. Selection would be pure luxury.
1 - Not Needed: No basis to select this position in first round.
Where there was a tie between two players on the combined score, I simply ranked them according to my own belief as to which player would help the team more.
Here's my current top 20:
1. Alex Barron, OT, FSU (10.0; 5.0/5.0)
Barron is the the clear top choice at OT. Could come in and start for the Rams at RT and be groomed to take over for Pace in a few years. If he drops past the top dozen picks, the Rams should consider trading up to get him, perhaps offering a fourth round pick as they did last year to trade up to get Steven Jackson.
2. Jammal Brown, OT, Oklahoma State (9.5; 5.0/4.5)
Brown is a notch below Barron at OT, and could be viewed as more of a career RT. There is a good chance that the Rams can get him at pick 19, but they should be wary if Barron goes in the top 10, as there are some teams in the 11-18 range who could grab him.
3. Thomas Davis, FS, Georgia (9.0; 5.0/4.0)
Now that the Rams have scrapped the Pisa to safety plan, and with Archuleta still a question mark, safety has to be deemed a top concern. Davis is clearly the top player at that position, and could be a Pro Bowler if he is allowed to settle in at SS. The Rams would probably have to jump to the top 15 to get him. If they think they can get an OT who can contribute in Round 2, it could be worth the gamble.
4. Antrel Rolle, CB, Miami (8.5; 3.5/5.0)
I truly believe that Rolle is the best player in the draft. If he were to somehow fall to the Rams, I'd have no problem if they selected him, even though OT and S are much bigger needs. If I was certain that he would be willing to play FS, he'd be No. 1 on my list.
5. Shawne Merriman, DE, Maryland (8.5; 3.5/5.0)
The biggest knock on Merriman is that he's a tweener best suited for a 3-4. Maybe so, but I suspect the same thing would be said today about Leonard Little, and he's fit in fairly well with the Rams' 4-3, wouldn't you say?
6. Derrick Johnson, OLB, Texas (8.0; 3.0/5.0)
After Rolle, I see Johnson as the second surest thing in the draft. But the Rams are well set at LB, so he's not at the very top of the list. He'll be gone long before the Rams pick anyway, so its a moot point.
7. Adam "Pac Man" Jones, CB, West Virginia (8.0; 3.5/4.5)
Jones is a pure CB, so if the Rams selected him, he'd be competing with Butler and Fisher for a job, rather than auditioning for the FS role. His PR abilities would be a nice bonus.
8. Brodney Poole, FS, Oklahoma (8.0; 5.0/3.0)
If the Rams took him at 19, just about every "expert" would call it a reach. But, if he stepped in and became a solid starting FS, would anyone complain?
9. David Baas, OG, Michigan (8.0; 4.0/4.0)
Few have Baas this high. I see him as the kind of inside lineman that you build a running game around. Steven Jackson certainly would like it if he ended up on the Rams.
10. Khalif Barnes, OT, Wisconsin (8.0; 5.0/3.0)
Barnes would be an acceptable first round choice, but I have this nagging feeling that he's not really any better than second round rated OTs like Adam Terry.
11. Carlos Rogers, CB, Auburn (7.5; 3.5/4.0)
Big, talented and experienced. Hard to pass up that combination in a CB.
12. DeMarcus Ware, DE, TroyState (7.0; 3.5/3.5)
He has PASS RUSHER written all over him, and pass rushers are the DBs best friend.
13. Heath Miller, TE, Virgina (7.0; 2.5/4.5)
Can the Rams afford to go with a skill position player in Round 1? Probably not, but Miller certainly would be a dynamic addition to the offense.
14. Erasmus James, DE, Wisconsin (7.0; 3.5/3.5)
James' stock has dropped, but he'd still be a nice addition to the D line rotation.
15. Darryl Blackstock, OLB, Virginia (7.0; 3.0/4.0)
Would be a pick for the future, but this kid has a great future ahead of him.
16. David Pollack, DE, Georgia (7.0; 3.5/3.5)
Ever since the Rams took Grant Wistrom at #6, they always seem to be linked to players described as having a "good motor."
17. Odell Thurman, OLB, Georgia (6.5; 3.0/3.5)
Another player who would be a choice for the future of the team.
18. Braylon Edwards, WR, Michigan (6.5; 1.5/5.0)
There is no chance that the Rams will have a shot at him, but by my formula, he rates high enough for this list.
19. Marlin Jackson, CB, Michigan (6.5; 3.5/3.0)
He could be a decent prospect to convert to FS.
20. Marcus Spears, DE, LSU (6.0; 3.5; 2.5)
Big DE would be a good situational run stopper.
Re: Final AvengerRam Draft Board (Top 20), With Commentary
I can't disagree with anything you said ( although I'm sure someone will )