The ink barely dry on the 2011 NFL Draft, the time has come to take a really, really early look ahead with a 2012 NFL mock draft. Will the next one mystify fans like this one did? Bet on it. As for the picks, things change. This time last year, Marvin Austin was a top pick in the draft. In this telling of the 2012 NFL Draft, the St. Louis Rams get their first round receiver.
SBNation's Brian Galliford put together this iteration. Naturally, Andrew Luck is the first overall pick...by the San Francisco 49ers, who used a second-round pick this year to draft QB Colin Kaepernick and assuring the Rams of two division wins by handing Alex Smith the starting job in 2011.
As for the Rams, projected as the division winners here, they pick Notre Dame receiver Michael Floyd. For a while it looked like Floyd be available in the NFL supplemental draft after a DUI arrest. But the school declined to bounce a talented football player.
Though the Rams have done a nice job building depth at receiver, they still don't have a go-to target for Sam Bradford.
With their picks in rounds 2-4 this year and some of the players already on the roster, the Rams' offense is obviously planning to approach each game with quantity, rather than quality. Many receivers, some variety in skills, will give Sam Bradford options in the passing game and keep most pages in Josh McDaniels' hefty, spread-offense based playbook. A guy like Floyd would give the Rams a blue chip receiver, like McDaniels had in Randy Moss, something they missed out on when Atlanta mortgaged the family farm to move up to draft Julio Jones.
Some other options for the Rams in the 2012 NFL Draft:
Michigan State DT Jerel Worthy could be the three-technique the Rams are desperately seeking, after opting against Corey Liuget and Terrell McClain, who they had ranked way higher on the draft board for second-round picks on Friday morning, only to be talked out of it by others in the room for Lance Kendricks.
Arkansas RB Kniles Davis is another option, considering they had Mark Ingram in consideration with their first round pick. By the time next year's draft rolls around, Devaney will have to be thinking about a replacement for Steven Jackson. Oregon's LeMichael James is another candidate.