The rams season just ended and already there is an influx of draft talk. I have been officially sucked in, no matter how much I tried to resist it. So I ask you, how about a different approach?
Many people keep talking about going the route of the WR, and that is debateable as to who we should take. To be honest, I think WR will be targeted in FA, rather than taking a chance on a college player. Look at this regime's past history-Brooks Foster (5th round out of UNC) never made any sense to me, but he is gone after only two years. Mardy Gilyard (4th round out of Cinn) has yet to adapt fully to the next level, and honestly I don't know how long he can hide in the shadows. I called it a while back that I think the FO is going to make another strong run at Vincent Jackson. They already made headway on bringing him to St. Louis, so we know that he wouldn't mind landing on a team with a Bradford at the helm. Not to mention, they already had prelim talks with a tentative agreement. We will see...
So the guy that I was looking at for #14 is an interior lineman out of Florida. Mike Pouncey, has played primarily C this year, but has the ability to play both OG and C. In 2008 and 2009, he started every game at RG (That's after playing DT his Freshman year). The versatility with the durability will help out a young O-line that will see plenty of injuries in the future...it's inevitable. Add that to his character which coaches rant about. They talk about what a leader he is and how he is the same level-headed person with the team and off the field (4-pillars anyone?).
Performance-wise he has been very impressive. For a guy his size he moves very well. He has a good first step/reaction. He pulls well down the line on running plays. He has the ability to make it to the 2nd level and eat up a LB with relative ease. The guy is a stud in the interior line of Florida. Did I say he has started every game for the last 3 years on the O-line.
It should help that his Twin brother Maurkice Pouncey has had success at both OG and C with the Steelers. Outside of Bradford and maybe Mike Williams of Tampa, Pouncey was next in line for the Off rookie of the year award. In comparing Mike Pouncey to Mike Iupati from last years draft, I would take Pouncey all day. Iupati was a man amongst boys when he was at Idaho. He played too tall for an OG, he holds way too much and his false starts this last year were a bit discouraging. Pouncey has a better set of Mechanics and his play against D-linemen coming out of the SEC would better translate to the next level.
I know this is not the sexy pick people would like, but it would make sense in watching Billy D. through two drafts as the shot caller. He has invested picks in two OT's and a FA pickup in Brown at C. It is apparent that protecting our $50 million investment is a priority and between Jacob Bell and Goldberg the job is not getting done. Not to mention our redzone offense really needs the help at the interior O-line...just ask Steven Jackson.
In the 2nd round I think we will really need to look at the Def. regardless (as much as it pains me to say to not pick up Baldwin). A guy like OLB Bruce Carter is expected to fall due to the ACL tear or maybe a DT Marvin Austin, who didn't get to play this year, but is an absolute beast.
What says you TST?