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  1. #1
    MauiRam's Avatar
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    LSU's Dorsey is best bet for the Rams' first pick

    LSU's Dorsey is best bet for the Rams' first pick
    By Bernie Miklasz
    ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
    04/24/2008

    Sports Columnist Bernie Miklasz

    In Saturday's NFL draft, the best play for the Rams would be to trade down, and collect a bundle of premium picks for their No. 2 overall selection. And we hear rumors that come mostly out of talk-radio and Internet fantasyland.

    The speculation is for entertainment purposes only. Unless the Rams receive a whopper of an offer they can't refuse, and get their hands on additional premium picks that could reinforce the roster's soft spots, they'll hold on to No. 2.

    And then it comes down to choosing the right guy.

    LSU defensive tackle Glenn Dorsey is believed to be the top-rated player on the Rams' draft board, but Virginia defensive end Chris Long and Ohio State pass-rush specialist Vernon Gholston are in play. I wouldn't knock any of the three options.
    But Dorsey should be the one for several reasons. We'll explain why and try to clear up some misconceptions:


    Dorsey is the consensus best player. According to reports, nearly two-thirds of NFL teams have him rated as the No. 1 talent in the draft. Dorsey is a rare defensive tackle who can wreck a running game and generate an inside pass rush. And a dynamic interior rush opens things up for the edge rushers.

    Rams defensive coordinator Jim Haslett has said Dorsey is the finest DT prospect he has seen in 20 years. Dorsey has been compared to future Hall of Famer Warren Sapp. Dorsey had some injuries at LSU but played at a fierce level even when dinged up. The Rams have cleared him medically.

    "Dorsey is a tremendous player," said NFL.com's Gil Brandt, who was the top personnel expert in the league during his distinguished tenure with the Dallas Cowboys. "Very, very strong, and with great first-step quickness. Rams fans shouldn't worry. This guy isn't Jimmy Kennedy. He loves playing the game. He is relentless. He will really compete."

    Despite impressions to the contrary, the Rams have a need at defensive tackle. LaRoi Glover is nearly 34 years old, and is in the final year of his contract. He's more effective when kept fresh in a part-time role. Claude Wroten has done little in the league. The other DTs, Adam Carriker and Clifton Ryan, are developing players. There's clearly a spot here for a dominant defensive tackle.

    Memo: Adam Carriker is versatile. The Chicken Littles who want to draft Chris Long continue to cackle about the Rams' desperate need at DE. Sure, they need to address that area. But Carriker, the 13th overall draft pick in 2007, made his reputation at Nebraska at defensive end. Last season, in the Rams' final few games, Carriker lined up at DE on about one-third of the snaps.

    This sets up all sorts of possibilities and fun for Haslett. The Rams can line up Dorsey and Carriker at tackle on their base defense, be strong at tackle, and juice the pass rush by aligning linebacker Will Witherspoon at rush end. Witherspoon was terrific in that situational role last season, notching seven sacks, including sacks in five consecutive games. Carriker can bulk up the line by playing right end on short-yardage and goal-line situations. With Dorsey providing torque inside, Haslett has more combinations to work with.


    LSU players are a sound investment. I looked at the past 10 NFL drafts, and LSU players have been money when chosen in the first two rounds. Among the 17 LSU talents chosen in the first two rounds over the past decade, there are only a couple of disappointments most notably wideout Michael Clayton, at Tampa Bay. And it's too soon to tell on quarterback JaMarcus Russell (Oakland), last year's No. 1 overall selection.

    But a bunch of LSU Tigers on that list are impressive NFL players, including Alan Faneca, Joseph Addai, LaRon Landry, Dwayne Bowe, Anthony McFarland, Corey Webster, Kevin Faulk, Mark Roman and Andrew Whitworth. Others (Marcus Spears and Josh Reed) have been solid, positive contributors.

    Yes, the Rams made a mistake in taking LSU's Wroten in the third round in 2006, but that's because they disregarded warning signs about his personal conduct.

    Just because the Rams have erred in using prime picks on defensive tackles in the past, that's irrelevant to Dorsey's case. He should be judged on his own merits. Moreover, the Rams have reorganized their scouting-drafting operation.

    Dorsey represents the best combination of talent, toughness and consistent achievement at the major-college level. And he has the best chance to be great in


  2. #2
    shower beers's Avatar
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    Re: LSU's Dorsey is best bet for the Rams' first pick

    pweh. It's an interesting article indeed...things that I haven't thought about yet.

    Thoughts?

  3. #3
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    Re: LSU's Dorsey is best bet for the Rams' first pick

    Well, glad to know that Bernie has insider sources with two-thirds of the league offices.

    I'm surprised he's plying that worn "our backups aren't great so we need to draft a new starter" logic. If having a former Pro Bowler who is still productive with limited reps and a promising young player who excelled in the role as a rookie constitutes having a need at the position, I wish we had more of that kind of need. You know, instead of the kind of need where single backup players on other teams were more productive than all of the players on our roster the previous season (i.e. defensive end).

  4. #4
    laram0's Avatar
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    Re: LSU's Dorsey is best bet for the Rams' first pick

    So University of Virginia and Ohio State players are dogmeat?:\

  5. #5
    onslaught11 Guest

    Re: LSU's Dorsey is best bet for the Rams' first pick

    Peeshaw, Dorsey is an injury waiting to happen. Comparing him to Sapp. Didn't they call Booger a baby Sapp. That term is being thrown around too much. I think Dorsey will struggle in the pros. I just don't see him dominating. I see a good player in the league but not anywhere close to the hype he is getting. That injury on his leg gets me worried.

    Go with the safe bet. Go long.

  6. #6
    Tony Soprano Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by MauiRam View Post

    This sets up all sorts of possibilities and fun for Haslett.
    While Haslett is having fun - we're getting the second overall pick in the draft in the basement of the NFL.

    I don't know if I buy the part of LSU players being good Pros - consistently.

    Wroten wasn't the only Defensive lineman taken last year - his teammate, Kyle Williams, didn't do much in the NFL either.

    From Scout.com - last year on Kyle Williams:

    "The rock on the defensive line for the Tigers ... Teams with Claude Wroten to give the Tigers two of the best defensive tackles in the nation ..."

  7. #7
    harrydog's Avatar
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    Re: LSU's Dorsey is best bet for the Rams' first pick

    Quote Originally Posted by onslaught11 View Post
    I think Dorsey will struggle in the pros. I just don't see him dominating. I see a good player in the league but not anywhere close to the hype he is getting. That injury on his leg gets me worried.
    I feel the same way about Long. I'm not sure he's as good as the hype he's been getting. I think Dorsey would have more of an impact than Long. The only hesitation I have is the injury concern, but apparently it can't be that bad or there wouldn't be so many teams interested in Dorsey.
    But like I've said before, I'll be happy with any of the three.

  8. #8
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    Re: LSU's Dorsey is best bet for the Rams' first pick

    onslaught....one quick question....did you see the LSU - Ohio State title game? The man was a beast in the middle and his injury didn't seem to hurt his play one bit.

    Most of you are going to wring your hands in disgust when the Rams take Dorsey. However, after the season starts you'll see why.

  9. #9
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    Re: LSU's Dorsey is best bet for the Rams' first pick

    Last season, in the Rams' final few games, Carriker lined up at DE on about one-third of the snaps.
    And how many sacks did he get from that spot? We can line up AC at any postion, I just would think we would want him to produce.

  10. #10
    onslaught11 Guest

    Re: LSU's Dorsey is best bet for the Rams' first pick

    Quote Originally Posted by txramsfan View Post
    onslaught....one quick question....did you see the LSU - Ohio State title game? The man was a beast in the middle and his injury didn't seem to hurt his play one bit.

    Most of you are going to wring your hands in disgust when the Rams take Dorsey. However, after the season starts you'll see why.

    I saw that game. He had 3-4 good plays in that game. But if you look at it the other way, Ohio State was down badly and had to start passing. They knew what was coming and the LSU defense teed off.

    On the other hand I saw the Florida game and Glenn Dorsey was really a non factor during that game. He was consistently get pushed back on run play.

    I am not saying he is a bad player but not anywhere close to his hype. People are putting him as the second coming of Sapp.

    What really concerns me is the leg injury. I see many stories that it is not healing properly. I haven't seen a story that says it healed properly and there is no concern.

    I rather go with Chris Long. I see him as under rated in the draft. I seen him play and he is good.

    I see he is comparable to Wistrom in football intelligence. Wistrom may not have been the greatest football player but I saw that he was good at diagnosing plays. I saw many games where he would stop rushing when he saw it was a screen pass and fall back to intercept or knock down the pass.
    That is something you can not really teach.

    Chris Long is comparable to Kerney in pass rushing. He is a give it all effort guy who uses many different type of move to get to the QB.

    Chris Long is comparable to Patrick Willis in run stopping. He has a knack for always being around the ball and blowing up run plays.

    That is the type of football player I would like for the Rams.

  11. #11
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    Re: LSU's Dorsey is best bet for the Rams' first pick

    What really concerns me is the leg injury. I see many stories that it is not healing properly. I haven't seen a story that says it healed properly and there is no concern.
    You mean except for this article which says the Rams aren't concerned?
    "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

  12. #12
    Mooselini Guest

    Re: LSU's Dorsey is best bet for the Rams' first pick

    The injury isn't concerning me. Its just our lack at DE. Sure, Witherspoon is a good pass rusher, but our defensive ends can't get the job done. Both are old as Dinosaurs, if anything we need to start finding young replacements.

    We have two young DT's who improved our rush stop last season. That's improvement. We just need to get that DE, so we have a young interior and a young end.

  13. #13
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    Re: LSU's Dorsey is best bet for the Rams' first pick

    Quote Originally Posted by laram0 View Post
    So University of Virginia and Ohio State players are dogmeat?:\
    NO I BELIEVE BERNIE IS TRYING TO POINT OUT THAT PLAYERS THAT COME FROM LSU ARE HIGHLY TRAINED AND ARE SEASONED FOR THE NEXT LEVEL.. YES OHIO STATE IS A GREAT SCHOOL BUT THEY HAVE HAD FAR TOO MANY BUSTS IN RECENT YEARS IN THE FIRST ROUND...

  14. #14
    Tony Soprano Guest

    Re: LSU's Dorsey is best bet for the Rams' first pick

    Quote Originally Posted by bruce4life View Post
    NO I BELIEVE BERNIE IS TRYING TO POINT OUT THAT PLAYERS THAT COME FROM LSU ARE HIGHLY TRAINED AND ARE SEASONED FOR THE NEXT LEVEL.. YES OHIO STATE IS A GREAT SCHOOL BUT THEY HAVE HAD FAR TOO MANY BUSTS IN RECENT YEARS IN THE FIRST ROUND...
    Bernie was wrong about that part - the same reasoning could've
    been used to select Wroten in the first round!

    This quote is from an analysis on NFL.com:

    "leaves one to wonder if he can dominate at the next level or is a player who was covered up by the LSU gang-tackling scheme (Tiger defensive linemen in the past have not lived up to their college billing in the NFL)."


    NFL Events: Combine Player Profiles - Glenn Dorsey

    .

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