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WalterFootball: Rams Leaning OL in Round 2, WR in Round 3?

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  • WalterFootball: Rams Leaning OL in Round 2, WR in Round 3?

    Rams Leaning OL in Round 2, WR in Round 3
    Updated March 4, 2017
    By Charlie Campbell.
    Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell.

    In many recent years, the Rams were a power player in the NFL Draft, as they had a boat load of picks from their 2012 trade with the Redskins. Last year, the Rams went the opposite direction, giving up a huge haul to move from 15th to first overall in order to select quarterback Jared Goff. The 2016 season was ugly as Goff played horribly behind a weak offensive line and a receiving corps that lacked talent. Los Angeles changed out its coaching staff, but the roster weaknesses remain. Los Angeles is without its first-round pick, and one of its third-round choices went to the Titans, so the Rams are lacking resources to improve. In speaking with sources with the Rams, upgrading the offensive line and wide receivers are the goals for the offseason and 2017 NFL Draft.

    Between the offensive line and wide receivers, it sounds like the line is the priority in the second round. The Rams selected left tackle Greg Robinson with the second-overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, and Robinson has been a massive disappointment. He is approaching bust category and could be moved to guard or right tackle if the Rams are able to land an upgrade at left tackle. Utah tackle Garett Bolles could be an option if he slips to the second round. Western Kentucky guard Forrest Lamp is another blocker who could land in Los Angeles. The offensive line prospects are less talented than the wide receivers - check out our 2017 NFL Draft Offensive Tackle Rankings - and the Rams could land a quality wide receiver in the third round.

    The Rams put a ton of resources into Goff, so the organization hierarchy of Les Snead and Kevin Demoff needs Goff to show significant improvement in 2016. Giving him better blocking and more receiving talent could improve the chances of Goff making a big jump in year two.


  • #2
    Seems entirely logical.

    I'd call the second category "receivers," though. With the outstanding crop of TEs in this year's draft, it very well might be that the best receiver available in Round 3 will be a TE rather than a WR.

    Comment


    • #3
      While it will be important to fix the O-Line, I would be interested to know where Walterfootball learned the Rams are leaning O-Line in round 2. I tend to think the Rams may try to address the OL in FA. JC Tretter would be a good start I'm thinking.

      If I were to bet on this, after what I saw of Evan Engram at yesterday's Combine, I wouldn't be at all surprised to see McVay push for him if he's there at #37. There are constant comparisons made to Jordan Reed of the Redskins, whom Sean used heavily in their offense. If we cut Lance Kendricks for FA $ or trade Tyler Higbee, Engram could be on the radar screen. But its early yet

      Go Rams!

      Comment

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      • Nick
        Evaluating the 2017 Rams Draft
        by Nick
        Just like every year, it didnít take long after the draft ended for the ďgradingĒ articles to come out. You know the ones Ė where analysts try to evaluate every teamís decisions before the prospects even show up on the field to show what theyíre going to do in the league.

        I get the cynicism that emerges as a reaction to these articles, but I do think itís interesting to some degree to reflect on what the team was able to do and provide some opinion about the draft class as a whole.

        Please note that my opinions here are certainly not final evaluations of a prospect, but rather just early impressions based upon what I already knew/read about them as well as my own amateur opinion about the team, its needs, and its personnel. I welcome anyone else to respond and provide similar impressions, comments, questions, and concerns.

        But because no post-draft article is apparently complete with some kind of grade, I will be rating each pick based on my overall satisfaction with the selection using the following scale:

        = Not a fan of the selection at all
        = Okay but could have done better
        = Solid all around pick
        = Very satisfied with the selection
        = Jumping off the couch excited


        FULL RAMS DRAFT RESULTS
        ROUND TWO: GERALD EVERETT, TE, SOUTH ALABAMA
        My Thoughts: Entering Day Two, Everett was not the top player on my Rams board, but he was the top pass catcher. I was disappointed that the Rams missed out on Evan Engram and David Njoku, but it was clear they werenít going to last to the Ramsí pick in the second round, and I didnít like the idea of the Rams trading up and losing more picks this year. After the top three tight ends in this class, Everett represented the top of the second tier and still a very good prospect in his own right. He is a better blocker than some of the other receiving/joker tight ends available in this class, and I think heís in the best spot to maximize his potential. The fact that the Rams were able to trade down and still get him was a great maneuver.
        My Rating:



        ROUND THREE: COOPER KUPP, WR, EASTERN WASHINGTON
        My Thoughts: Kupp was a prospect some had pegged as a potential pick for the Rams in the second round, so he offers good value as their third round selection. He offers a very intriguing combination of size and technical ability at the position. Heíll join the team and immediately become one of the best set of hands available to Jared Goff. He understands the finer points of the position, which allows him to make up for shortcomings in other areas. Unlike some, I donít think heís limited to just the slot at the NFL level, but heís going to need to perfect his craft to excel on the perimeter. The good news is heís extremely competitive and will meet that challenge...
        -04-30-2017, 09:06 AM
      • Nick
        Final Thoughts on the Ramsí 2016 Draft
        by Nick
        With the draft in the books, here are some final thoughts on how I think the Rams didÖ

        -This draft will live or die by Jared Goff. The Rams traded their entire Thursday and Friday nights along with multiple picks next year to move up and take their choice of QB. If Goff pans out, it will have been a brilliant move. If he doesnít, everyone is looking for new jobs and this franchise will likely be picking high for a number of years. Out of the two top quarterbacks, Goff was my preferred option, so Iím excited to see him as a Ram. I think his combination of accuracy, quick release, and pocket presence give him a great chance to be successful, especially with Todd Gurley to hand the ball off to. He seems like a genuinely good and humble guy, the kind of player you like to root for. After getting a Gurley jersey last year as my first jersey since Longís number change, Iím confident Goff will be my next purchase.

        -The Rams came back in the fourth round and began grabbing their new quarterback the kind of weapons heís going to need to become successful, and if thereís one trend that you see among most of their Day Three selections, itís that they chose players who were very good value at their spots. That started with Western Kentucky tight end Tyler Higbee, who could have been a Day Two pick if not for some off the field issues which you have to think the Rams investigated thoroughly before making this selection. Higbee is a huge target at 6í6Ē, and as a former wide receiver, he knows how to make himself a successful target down the field. He is the Anti-Cook, with only one drop in 2015. Heís not the most refined blocker, but if the Rams play him in the receiving role that Cook has vacated, he isnít going to be asked to be a stout sixth man protecting on the offensive line. Kendricks likely still emerges as the starter, but subbing Higbee in as a pass catching target over the middle will give Goff a safety valve that he can dump off to when things get rough and force defenses to respect the intermediate middle of the field.

        -The Rams continued their value shopping with South Carolina wide receiver Pharoh Cooper in the fourth round. This guy was at the top of Avís Day Three draft board, and apparently he was high up on the Ramsí list as well. With good reason. He doesnít have the kind of size that some Rams fans wanted to see in a WR pick, but he sure has playmaking ability, as evident by his two selections to the All-SEC first team in the last two years. Heís a jack of all trades type of player, a movable chess piece that the Rams can utilize to keep opposing defenses guessing. He didnít test particularly well at the Combine, which might account for him being available in the fourth round, but some people saw Day Two value on him. Cooper is incredibly quick off the line of scrimmage, and combined with Goffís quick release and Cooperís ability to gain yards-after-catch, this could be a very intriguing and dangerous...
        -05-01-2016, 04:51 AM
      • MauiRam
        Finding the Fits: Rams are hoping rookie TE provides instant impact
        by MauiRam
        Tyler Higbee -- if he's available -- looks primed to be a favorite target of Jared Goff

        by Rob Rang The Sports Xchange/CBSSports.com

        (This is part of a series -- Finding the Fits -- in which NFLDraftScout.com will review the more intriguing picks made during the 2016 NFL Draft. The goal is to identify one relatively unheralded player per team who appears to be a good schematic fit and, therefore, more likely to be a surprise contributor early in his pro career.)

        Los Angeles' best fit: TE Tyler Higbee, Western Kentucky, No. 110 overall
        By boldly trading up to the No. 1 overall pick to secure the services of California quarterback Jared Goff, the Rams made perhaps the splashiest move of the 2016 NFL Draft. While some quibbled with the price general manager Les Snead paid to make the move, the club was eager to attract the notoriously fickle fans in the "new" Los Angeles market, which would have been difficult after finishing dead last in the NFL in passing (175.3 yards per game) in 2015.

        While the addition of Goff has largely been celebrated, the "other" talent general manager Les Snead and head coach Jeff Fisher brought to LA has generated significantly less interest. Of course, given that the Rams waited 109 picks and approximately 36 hours before making their next pick after Goff could have something to do with it.

        That next pick -- Higbee -- could play a significant role on the Rams' offense as a rookie, as well. That is, of course, if Higbee is cleared to play at all. He pleaded not guilty on May 5 in his initial arraignment following a pre-draft arrest outside of a Bowling Green (Ky.) bar on charges of second degree assault, evading arrest and public intoxication.

        Higbee's availability is somewhat in question. His talent is not.
        In a weak year for tight ends, the 6-foot-6, 249-pound Higbee had generated a great deal of interest from scouts. Some viewed him as the second-best prospect in the class behind only Hunter Henry, the reigning Mackey Award winner who was selected 35th overall by San Diego.

        Higbee began his career with the Hilltoppers at wide receiver and didn't emerge as a standout tight end until his senior season. Despite missing five games (as well as the Senior Bowl and combine) due to a knee injury, Higbee hauled in eight touchdowns on a career-high 38 receptions for 563 yards last year. When healthy, he showed off the agility, acceleration and soft hands to project as a featured target down the seam, where the Rams were looking to replace departed free agent Jared Cook.

        Higbee possesses the natural receiving skills to make an immediate impact in the Rams' passing game but he is also surprisingly tough as a blocker. That kind of grit is expected on any team led by Fisher, who rightly will prioritize super-sophomore running back Todd Gurley as the main component of the Rams' offense.
        ...
        -06-21-2016, 11:25 PM
      • AvengerRam
        After 6 games, the Rams' most productive rookie is...
        by AvengerRam
        ...Josh Forrest.

        Its true, but that's just wrong.

        I'm not going to second guess the trade/selection of Jared Goff. I still believe he could prove to be an excellent QB.

        But...

        Before the trade, I wanted a WR in round 1 (admittedly, Laquan Tredwell has done zilch) and Hunter Henry (becoming a stud) and Dak Prescott (new star in Big D) in Round 2. Yes... I know its hindsight, and yes... I know that there's no guarantee that those players would have succeeded here, but... its hard not to play the "what if" game.

        I hope this is just a delay in the development of this class. In addition to Goff, I still have hope that Pharoh Cooper and Tyler Higbee will become productive players.

        Still, when you look at how short-handed we are due to injuries, it sure makes you wonder what might have happened if we had a few more young reinforcements on the roster.
        -10-17-2016, 03:47 PM
      • Nick
        PFF: Rams earn B, Titans A+ in trade for No. 1 overall pick
        by Nick
        RAMS EARN B, TITANS A+ IN TRADE FOR NO. 1-OVERALL PICK
        Steve Palazzolo recaps the Rams-Titans trade, and discusses which QB the Rams should select with the first pick off the board.
        STEVE PALAZZOLO | 6 HOURS AGO (AP Photo/Michael Thomas)(AP Photo/Michael Thomas)

        Blockbuster! Draft season is heating up as all of the rumors about the Tennessee Titans trading back have actually come true, and even more stunning is the move back to No. 15 overall.

        Of course, Cris Collinsworth already predicted this move four weeks ago, but to see it all come to fruition has thrown a massive wrench into all draft predictions. Letís size it up:

        Titans Receive:
        2016 1st round (15 overall)
        2016 2nd round (43 overall)
        2016 2nd round (45 overall)
        2016 3rd round (76 overall)
        2017 1st round
        2017 3rd round

        Rams Receive:
        2016 1st round (1 overall)
        2016 4th round (113 overall)
        2016 6th round (177 overall)

        Titans grade: A+
        Any time you can move back and accumulate assets, Iím all for it. Especially given Tennesseeís situation as they already have their quarterback in Marcus Mariota and theyíve stocked up on picks in the 40-80 range in a draft that has a lot of depth in the first 80 or so players. Then tack on next yearís first round pick, and Tennessee is in prime position to add a lot of talent to their roster and build around their franchise quarterback the next few years.

        Rams grade: B
        Is this a good, necessary move for the Rams? Yes, it is. But they have to understand the inherent risk that comes with giving up so many assets for their franchise quarterback. The best NFL teams can often point to their last two to four drafts to show the source of their talent, so giving up a large number of picks immediately makes the Rams a prime candidate to have a more depleted roster three to four years down the road. As long as thatís understood, and patience is adhered to, this move is still a win for them, assuming they pick a good quarterback. Which brings us toÖ

        Who should the Rams pick?
        Jared Goff. Heís the best quarterback in the draft, makes every throw, handles pressure and he has the best pocket presence. While he doesnít possess a cannon for an arm, it doesnít really matter as he can throw with anticipation, work through reads, and he simply does things that the best quarterbacks in the league all have as common traits. While I understand the love for Carson Wentz ó and his skillset is very appealing ó he is lacking in some of the areas in which Goff already excels. Itís risky to bank on Wentzís improvement in key areas that are necessary for success at the next level.

        Who the Rams will pick
        Carson Wentz. As much as we love Goff, the Rams likely made this move in order to get the quarterback with the most upside, one they can mold in their rebuilding process, and the one the coaches...
        -04-14-2016, 03:25 PM
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