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Thread: MMQB: The Secrets In St. Louis

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    MMQB: The Secrets In St. Louis

    The Secrets In St. Louis
    By Greg A. Bedard
    6 hours ago

    Peter King is tending to personal matters after the death of his older brother Kenny in England. Peter and his family greatly appreciate the outpouring of support they have received. Greg Bedard is pinch-hitting for Peter on Monday Morning Quarterback duties this week.


    Thursday will mark the four-week mark from the draft, which is being hailed in league circles as one of the deepest in years. If there’s any team that holds the keys to the major drama that could unfold in the first round, it’s the St. Louis Rams. With the second and 13th overall pick, coach Jeff Fisher and general manager Les Snead knows the options are limitless, including different trade scenarios.

    Yes, Snead and Rams already have opened for business on the trade market.

    “We have had some conversations with multiple teams,” Snead said on Sunday night. “They’re more flirtatious calls than anything. We have Nos. 2 and 13, but Houston has one. Nobody can really seriously chat with us until they are happy with at least two players. I think what might happen as we get closer to the draft, maybe it comes to fruition what Houston is going to do, maybe it doesn’t, you have more serious talks probably the week of the draft going, ‘Hey, if our player is there at 2, this is what we’re going to offer.’ I think it will get more serious.”

    Snead certainly knows how this works. In his first draft in 2012, the Rams traded the second overall pick to Washington in the Robert Griffin III trade. St. Louis, which was coming off a 2-14 season, received first-round picks in ’12, ’13 and ’14 and a second-round pick in ’12 in exchange for the second selection.

    Things will likely be different this time around because of the quality of the draft, the apparent lack of surefire quarterbacks and where the Rams are in Year 3 of the Fisher-Snead regime.

    In ’12, Andrew Luck was the no-doubt first overall pick. Only two other quarterbacks, Griffin and Ryan Tannehill (eighth to Miami), went in the top 20. Will any of the quarterbacks in this year’s class (Johnny Manziel, Teddy Bridgewater, Blake Bortles) be viewed as such must-haves that a team will move up swiftly to take one? Debatable.

    Snead thinks that in this particular draft, you don’t need to be a thrower of the ball to get people interested, not with top positional talents like pass rushers Jadeveon Clowney and Khalil Mack, receiver Sammy Watkins and tackles Greg Robinson and Jake Matthews available.

    “I actually think there’s more than one player that people would want to move up for. I just don’t know what they’d want to give to move up,” Snead said. “At the top maybe there’s four or five players who were one step or one notch ahead of the very good and sometimes a team might say we need to get that guy. You don’t know the value of what people would be willing to give. The fact that there could be multiple teams eyeing one of those guys could drive up the price a little bit.”

    The Rams themselves have an interesting dilemma. After two consecutive 7-9 seasons, including last season when Bradford missed the final nine games (ACL), the Rams are knocking on the door of being in the NFC playoff mix. A trade down from either draft spot might keep the team stocked in the draft for years to come, but how will that play if the Rams don’t post a winning season in Year 3?

    “I think the way to get it right is you make the right decision for the organization and I like to say you make the best decision long term because the short term is by definition short—it won’t last as long,” Snead said. “But I think you make a good point. Because we’re in 2014, this draft is really good, it’s a good chance for us to take some shots with picks in this draft to improve the team. Not only tomorrow and opening day, but also four and five years down the road.”

    The Rams have rebuilt their roster, which won 15 games in the five seasons before Fisher and Snead arrived, to the point where anyone save Watkins might not play right away at their targeted positions. St. Louis has a star end in Robert Quinn, and a very good one in Chris Long, which would put Clowney or Mack in a reserve role, at least initially. The Rams have Jake Long, Joe Barksdale and Rodger Safford as capable offensive tackles, meaning Robinson or Matthews would likely play elsewhere as rookies.

    Snead doesn’t mind. He points back to when the Ravens took future Hall of Fame left tackle Jonathan Ogden fourth overall and played him at left guard for a year before Tony Jones was traded.

    “They made a long-term decision and they made it work short term,” Snead said. “At the end of the day, that may have been something that helped Jonathan because you get to go in and get your feet at maybe a less vulnerable position. And in going from tackle to guard, you have to think quicker sometimes so that can make moving to tackle a smoother transition.

    “I’ve said this and sometimes people have taken it out of context and they think we have arrived. What I’ve said is we’re pretty much returning everybody at each position a guy who started for us last year. And the only one is one of the guard positions. That gives us a chance to say we don’t have to pick someone just to start. So now we can weigh our options moving back (or) staying, taking really, really good football players. A lot of these guys can help anybody and the more we have the better.”

    With the draft nearly four weeks away, the teams will soon begin their final deliberations. Snead said the scouting and the coaching staffs will meet in three of the next four weeks to “fine tune” the draft board. Then the trade talks will become more serious in nature. With the second and 13th picks, the Rams figure to be very popular. At the end of the day, they’re going to have to make a difficult decision about the present and future in this crucial draft.

    “I don’t think I ever look at it as, ‘This is it,’” Snead said. “But when we first got here there was a goal to build, develop and coach the football team to win consistently for the long term but we wanted to do it as rapidly as possible. So as we sit here, as you measure things, we’ve probably moved the needle. Before we got here they had 15 wins in five years and we’ve had 14 in two. But, trust me, 14 wins in two years—7-9, third and fourth in the division—is not the goal. Never has been and won’t be. I think we want to start winning back to back or multiple games in a row more consistently. There’s no question this draft, where we are, can help us do that. This is a nice draft to have those picks.”


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    Re: MMQB: The Secrets In St. Louis

    St. Louis has a star end in Robert Quinn, and a very good one in Chris Long, which would put Clowney or Mack in a reserve role, at least initially.
    Clowney zealots scream "Heresy!" in.....3.....2.....1...
    "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

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    Re: MMQB: The Secrets In St. Louis

    I think Clowney would be a great situational pass rusher to add to the Rams. But that's a luxury pick - we already have one of the best pass rushes in the league.

    We need help on the oline, the secondary, and could use a play maker or three and an outside LB to stuff the run against the run heavy teams in our division. Dunbar graded out as the #33 of 35 strongside backers by PFF - he was average against the run and completely outmatched in the passing game.

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    Re: MMQB: The Secrets In St. Louis

    Quote Originally Posted by HUbison View Post
    Clowney zealots scream "Heresy!" in.....3.....2.....1...
    Trade leverage speak.

    Go Rams!

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    Re: MMQB: The Secrets In St. Louis

    Quote Originally Posted by mde8352gorams View Post
    Trade leverage speak.

    Go Rams!
    I'm not sure I follow. Saying that Clowney would be the 3rd DE behind Quinn and Long is trade leverage speak?
    "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

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    Re: MMQB: The Secrets In St. Louis

    Quote Originally Posted by HUbison View Post
    I'm not sure I follow. Saying that Clowney would be the 3rd DE behind Quinn and Long is trade leverage speak?
    Saying we might not value him as much as others cause it's not a huge need so make us an offer? Then they make an offer and you tell them well team X made us a better offer do you want to rethink that offer?

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    Re: MMQB: The Secrets In St. Louis

    Quote Originally Posted by Mikey View Post
    Saying we might not value him as much as others cause it's not a huge need so make us an offer? Then they make an offer and you tell them well team X made us a better offer do you want to rethink that offer?
    Umm, well, okay, ..............but the point I was making was that the Insane Clowney Posse would not take kindly to the notion of Jeff Gordon opining on how Clowney would be a reserve behind Long and Quinn.
    "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

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    Re: MMQB: The Secrets In St. Louis

    Quote Originally Posted by mde8352gorams View Post
    Trade leverage speak.

    Go Rams!
    Maybe if a person in the Rams FO specifically went out and said that, it could be considered leverage speak.... but Greg Bedard? I don't see a talking head err excuse me, a "sports journalist" creating or negating whatever leverage already exists

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    Re: MMQB: The Secrets In St. Louis

    Quote Originally Posted by HUbison View Post
    Umm, well, okay, ..............but the point I was making was that the Insane Clowney Posse would not take kindly to the notion of Jeff Gordon opining on how Clowney would be a reserve behind Long and Quinn.
    Not sure who you're referring to when you use terms like "insane," but those of us who are knowledgeable sports fans have no problem with it.

    Because we realize, it doesn't matter who the starter is.

    The one that's getting the job done will be on the field regardless. And if they both are getting it done, perhaps Greg Williams finds a way to get them on the field together.

    Either way, it's all about what's good for the team.
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    Re: MMQB: The Secrets In St. Louis

    Quote Originally Posted by Fortuninerhater View Post
    Not sure who you're referring to when you use terms like "insane"
    He's referring to the Juggalos, of course.

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    Re: MMQB: The Secrets In St. Louis

    Quote Originally Posted by Fortuninerhater View Post
    Not sure who you're referring to when you use terms like "insane," but those of us who are knowledgeable sports fans have no problem with it.

    Because we realize, it doesn't matter who the starter is.

    The one that's getting the job done will be on the field regardless. And if they both are getting it done, perhaps Greg Williams finds a way to get them on the field together.

    Either way, it's all about what's good for the team.
    There is a rap group named Insane Clown Posse. They have a rather interesting, yet devoted, collection of fans. Much like the fans who see Jadeveon Clowney as the prospect who will walk on water to get to QBs. Therefore, Insane Clowney Posse.

    A paronomasia, if you will.
    Randart likes this.
    "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

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    Re: MMQB: The Secrets In St. Louis

    Quote Originally Posted by HUbison View Post
    There is a rap group named Insane Clown Posse. They have a rather interesting, yet devoted, collection of fans. Much like the fans who see Jadeveon Clowney as the prospect who will walk on water to get to QBs. Therefore, Insane Clowney Posse.

    A paronomasia, if you will.
    LOL. Nice, and it required me to learn a new word. Double points.

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    Re: MMQB: The Secrets In St. Louis

    Here is where I am with taking Clowney. If the Rams brass feel he's the pick and they feel Williams will have no problem getting plenty of playing time and plays out of Clowney I'm all for it. That said if they take him and it looks like Tavon and Shcotty where the offense did not have a clear plan from day one on how to use him, then I will be disappointed big time.
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    Re: MMQB: The Secrets In St. Louis

    I just hope Jeff, Les & Dems are going to be here for the next decade I really like the way they do their jobs! Insightful and entertaining they are the Rams Braintrust, that being said I wonder how much input SK has as owner? I assume from all that I hear or is said he pretty much lets the big three run the show and he takes care of the owner stuff. Wonder if Stan ever voices his thoughts on a particular player, or comes to Les & Dems and says: " listen I really like so so and keep him in mind come draft day".

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    Re: MMQB: The Secrets In St. Louis

    Quote Originally Posted by Randart View Post
    I just hope Jeff, Les & Dems are going to be here for the next decade I really like the way they do their jobs! Insightful and entertaining they are the Rams Braintrust, that being said I wonder how much input SK has as owner? I assume from all that I hear or is said he pretty much lets the big three run the show and he takes care of the owner stuff. Wonder if Stan ever voices his thoughts on a particular player, or comes to Les & Dems and says: " listen I really like so so and keep him in mind come draft day".

    Well I don't think you become (and maintain) head honcho CEO status for a billion dollar empire (including other sports teams) without knowing how to macromanage, hire well, and delegate authority. So, I'd be shocked if the wrap on Kroenke is inaccurate. I just don't see a world in which he micromanages the Rams or any of his other sports teams.

    That said, yeah, you wonder how many cents he puts in.

    I'm no business honcho, but I've represented some firms and seen them in action. I would imagine its less where he goes to the 3 of them to say something, and much much more where the 3 of them report to him to provide regular updates on what they're doing, planning, and why. If he sees a fault in the logic he'll be sure to voice it, if not, off they go. And for all items that don't pan out the way they intended, they'll need to figure out why that is the case, and report that in the next meeting along with their plans to mitigate and correct.

    Besides. Smart employees keep their boss well informed. If you are making a decision, make sure your boss knows why. If you're facing a decision with a difficult split in pros vs cons... go to your boss and get their outlook. Not all decisions will work out perfectly... but your decision making needs to be top shelf.

    I imagine Kroenke runs a well oiled machine, and Fisher and Company run things by him all the time.
    Randart likes this.

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