Not every one liked the St. Louis Rams decision to trade oft-penalized OT Alex Barron to Dallas for LB Bobby Carpenter, with many of the national pundits having already written off Carpenter as a bust.
However, there were a few that felt like he'd be a better fit in the Rams' 4-3 system, at the very least giving the Rams a role player in the nickel package. Jeremy Green at Scouts Inc. agrees with that assessment. His thoughts on why Carpenter will be better off playing in St. Louis after the jump.
He was not a true outside linebacker who could get after the quarterback, and he struggled to adapt to reading and reacting when playing inside in the 3-4 scheme. Getting him back to a traditional 4-3 defense where he can just read and react on the weak side will be a huge help. Carpenter is player who needs to be covered up and allowed to run, and the Rams' defensive front can do that. He will be playing next to second-year MLB (and former Ohio State teammate) James Laurinaitis, who did a nice job taking on blocks last season. That will keep Carpenter free to flow to the ball. He was not asked to cover much as an inside linebacker in the 3-4 defense and this is an area he is going to have to improve in quickly if he is going to be an every-down player. This defense will allow him to run and hit, and that is what he was asked to do in college.
If you buy into what Green is saying here, then Carpenter could be an important link in bolstering the Rams run defense on the weakside.
Of course, his assessment of Carpenter in coverage differs from other pundit talk of him being a fit as a nickel LB...which shows you the vast differences in how pundits assess players and teams.
A more interesting story heading into this season is how James Laurinaitis will look in his sophomore season.