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I am just so torn ...
...between the possibilities that exist for the Rams in the first two rounds, but especially the first round. We all know that this draft is deep ( thats what we always hear every year or so it seems ..yawn) We know who the "elite" players are and the different tiers of talent. But NONE of us know and wont until next week May 8th who they will actually select and whether or not a trade will be involved. So I did my own logical thinking and tried to come up with the most reasonable choices for us at 2 and 13. Lets look at some key facts ( these are under the Fish-Snead era) :
- We have shown the willingness to draft defensive players in the first two rounds ( eg Janoris, Ogletree, Brockers) as well as receivers ( Brian Quick, Stedman Bailey, Tavon Austin)
- We have never drafted a safety in the first round nor an offensive lineman. Maybe one or two running backs im not sure ( eg Pead). Also, Fisher has never drafted an OL in round 1. Is this correct cause Ive heard this MANY times before. ?
- We have exhibited the tendency to trade down, which is always a good thing in a deep draft. So clearly this is what they love to do and therefore there has to be no reason to believe this trend wont continue. Why not? Milk the cow ( Redskins; RGIII trade) for what its worth until all is gone I say!!!
I am sure there are more I may have missed but those are the main ones that stand out in my opinion. So with that being said, what are the most logical choices we can come up with that could give us the best idea of what they will do come draft day ?
Lets look at our personnel and coaches. We are built to run the football and get after the QB ( and stop the run too ). Analysts, fans, the coaches and everyone else can see that our most glaring weaknesses on defense were safety play and MAYBE the DT position because we had a few inexcusable long runs last year ( eg AP in the minny game, Gore in the ******* game in STL just to name a few) On offense, we all know we truly lack a #1 WR who can get consistent separation, get off press coverage, is very physical and runs crisp routes. The OL definitely use an upgrade, particularly at G positions where they would get pushed back into Bradford and/or the RB. Our offensive line coach Paul Bodreau is one of the best and is very good at getting the most out of the OL. Same thing for DL with Mike Waufle.
Now lets look at the most viable options and break them down one by one as far as the #2 pick is concerned. Obviously as stated many times before, If the Texans DONT select Clowney then the Rams front office has a very difficult decision to make. And in all actuality, IMHO, I THINK HOU WILL select him, as the idea of a Watt/Clowney duo is very intriguing to say the least and, also, they have been burned before with taking a QB #1 overall. So I would like to think that they will shy away from that and look for a good signal-caller in rd 2. Now we are sitting here at #2. I strongly believe that they will trade down here if they can get a trade partner no lower than ATL at #6. This way they can still pick an elite prospect and pick up an extra second. If no one wants to trade down, then I believe they will take the BPA at a position of need. However, its SOOO DIFFICULT to determine what that is, despite all we know and all we've heard. I can come up with a reason why they will NOT draft any of the elite prospects:
OL- They could very well pass on Robinson and Matthews in the first round because of Fishers track record with finding good/great OL later in the draft and because of our OL coach.
WR- they could very well pass on Sammy Watkins because they may feel they already have that receiver type on the roster in Tavon Austin. Mike Evans would be a more suitable fit, and the more likely choice if they go that route ( and if hes still on the board that is) but dont forget that we have Stedman Bailey emerging late last year and could be on the rise and the jury is still out on Quick, so he is being given one more chance)
S- They may pass on Ha Ha because they drafted TJ Mcdonald last year in the 2nd round IIRC, so this too might be another position that they dont feel they have to spend a high first rounder on. They could go with Calvin Pryor ( if still on the board), Terence Brooks or Jimmy Ward in the 2nd round.
CB- They could pass on Gilbert and Dennard because this, like S, Fisher/Snead may not be willing to spend high first rounder here as well because of the ability to coach up guys like Trumaine Johnson ( former 3rd or 4th rounder IIRC) and Janoris ( 2nd rounder).
Assuming Clowney is gone, then you would assume CLE and ATL are the two most likely trade partners. But even CLE you would have to think wont trade up two spots while giving up their second first round pick or second round pick when they have reason to believe that a QB could fall to them at #4. Even a browns player ( I think it was Josh Gordon) the other day on NFLN stated that he " was pretty sure they are taking a QB, just not sure who" And ATL needs pass rush help as well as pass protection help. So, if either team wants to move up and get the player they need, that means we can get a player like Watkins at #4 or a Jake Matthews/Greg Robinson at #6. We need receiver help and OT help the most right now. SO draft the best AVAILABLE out of these three, no one else. An argument can be made for Khalil Mack of course, but do we really NEED him right now? Im not so sure; he can definitely make the defense/LB corps better, but OT/WR is clearly the most pressing need. Robinson can come in and play guard while learning the LT spot, while Matthews will be an immediate RT and allow Saffold and Barksdale to work as guards. IMHO either one makes a ton of sense because it instantly makes the OL a strength, and also, fits our identity of power running and clock management. At #13, you would have to think safety here if Hasean Clinton Dix is available, if not, then go with Aaron Donald to solidify the interior pass rush/run stuffing ability if available. Ive heard mention of a CB here with Gilbert or Dennard, and apparently corners are more valuable than safeties in today's NFL, but the S play last year was so horrendous that corners had to play 5 to 1o yards off because of the lack of trust factor in the backfield. Also, wasnt it stated that Gregg Williams values the S position very high in his defenses? Ask Matt Bowen. And Rodney Mcleod is NOT a starter. HE is an excellent backup. We have Janoris and Trumaine at CB, these two guys are more than capable of playing well in man coverage. So if you went CB in this draft he would be mostly for depth and push the starters I guess.
I will end by saying this : Bradford is the number one priority right now. He needs to be protected first and foremost. That is the only way we stand a chance to compete in this brutal division. SO it would only make sense to surround him with the best available weapons and best available protection. So, OL should be the FIRST pick because you need the BPA at OL and the SECOND pick needs to be either Mike Evans or a trade down garnering more picks. I dont care how much you want to run the football, that will be taken away at some point or another and you will have to make plays through the air. So you need that #1 WR. And like I said, ultimately no one knows what the FO will do, so this is the most likely and logical solutions I could come up with. May 8th cannot come soon enough !!
Your thoughts?? I need some help and some feedback here!! And my apologies for such a lengthy article but i just had to let you guys know whats been burning on my mind lately with all the draft buzz and hype!
Re: I am just so torn ...
What's to say we don't stay at 2 and take one of the OT's and then move up from 13 to get Watkins?
Just thought I would throw a wrench into your already churning pot...
This space for rent...
Re: I am just so torn ...
I feel your pain.
There are so many options, and they all have merit. Take Clowney/Mack to make the defense even scarier... Take Robinson/Matthews to bolster the OL... Take Watkins to make the offense more dynamic... Trade down from No. 2... Trade down from No. 13.... Take a FS... Take a CB... Hope for Aaron Donald or Mike Evans at #13....
In my book, this is the most interesting draft since 2001, when we had 3 first round picks.
Re: I am just so torn ...
But yea, thats the thing Thoey. If they did that, then I would be fine with that too. That something I forgot to mention. I would be fine with the majority of moves they make because I trust Fish/Snead and co. That isnt to say that we cant miss on a player, I just think that there are so many different options/scenarios and most of them most fans would be comfortable with. But if they went that route, it would suggest that we are definitely putting stock into the offense and trying to provide that side of the ball with some key starters that would def help putting points on the board.
Re: I am just so torn ...
Agreed, I really really really want Sammy Watkins. But there are 2 or 3 other options that will be way better for us. (Mack, Robinson, Matthews)
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