For those of you who hate draft talk, especially mid-season, I apologize. I wish there were more positive and exciting issues to discuss, but I am having trouble NOT thinking about the off-season, especially as I live in an area dominated by 49ers fans and the current season is getting more and more frustrating. I had pre-season dreams of all the horrible/fun things I would say to all the 49ers fans as the Rams racked up the wins and Sam racked up the yards and touchdowns, as their team racked up loss after loss as Alex Smith proved once again that he is not NFL-worthy. Oops!
I have seen draft talk here on TST, and many prognostications regarding players and needs. Here is my take on the situation, for whatever it is worth.
Like many of you, I am an advocate of trading down. That isn't to say I am not a fan of Kalil/Blackmon/Jeffrey et al, yet I think that the top need is debatable--WR, CB, OT, OLB, DT--and trading down might help satisfy most of them in the early rounds. If the team can find a willing trade partner--Cincinnati for their 2 1st Rd picks or another top-10 team for their 1st and 2nd, for example Seattle or Washington who might covet a QB--it is definitely something to think about. Assuming a trade, I would like one of these following combinations:
* With Cincinnati's 2 1st RD picks, and the Rams' own 2nd, 3rd, and 4th RD picks
1st- Zach Brown, UNC OLB
Brown appears to be a supremely talented LB prospect, and his numbers from this season are backing it up. Through 10 games, he has 71 tackles, 5.5 Sacks, 2 Forced Fumbles, and 2 INTs. Also, as mentioned before on TST, the Rams are Browns favorite team.
1st- Jayron Hosley, Virginia Tech CB/PR
Hosley would fill two pressing needs, at CB and PR. He has 12 career INTs and is dynamic in the return game.
2nd- Mohamed Sanu, Rutgers, WR
He may not be as desirable as Blackmon or Jeffrey, but at 6'2" 215 he has the size and through 10 games this season, he has 94 catches for 973 yards and 7 TDs. Sign me up.
3rd- Nate Potter, Boise St., OT
Potter has been valuable protecting Kellen Moore's blindside for the past 2 seasons. He will need to get stronger, as the NFL will present a far greater challenge than the WAC, and it will be interesting to see how he performs in a bowl game against a higher-quality opponent.
4th- Tydreke Powell, UNC, DT
Powell was hyped coming into the season, but his performance has been inconsistent. Perhaps reuniting with Quinn will inspire him.
* With Seattle or Washington's 1st and 2nd RD picks, and the Rams' own 2nd, 3rd, and 4th RD picks
1st- Jonathan Martin, Stanford, OT
Shows a nasty streak and some consider him as good of a prospect as Kalil.
2nd- Jayron Hosely
2nd- Mohamed Sanu
3rd- Lavonte David, Nebraska, OLB
Through 10 games, David has produced 87 tackles, 2 sacks, 1 forced fumble, and 2 INTs. He is on pace to break his own Nebraska single-season tackle record. Has been called a "coaches dream" by HC Bo Pellini.
4th- Tydreke Powell
I think these fill most, if not all, of the perceived top needs of the team, if not with the most desirable, or best, players available at any one position, with the possible exception of Martin in the 2nd option. Either way, I think the team needs to think seriously about trading down for more picks, as future starters and depth are greatly needed. If this season has shown anything, the Rams need upgrades in talent both in starter's roles, and as depth. More picks equal more players to potentially fill those roles. Thanks for reading and I'm interested to see what you think.