The Rams have a logjam at a few positions, but aside from the wide reciever position, the tight end position has to be the most interesting. That's especially the case, since the Rams drafted Lance Kendricks and decided to run more two tight end sets this season. The Rams drafting Kendricks was a big surprise, but it should help in the long run.
Even though the pick was a surprise to many of us, it actually makes a lot of sense. The Rams had two vets at TE, and two one-year players playing TE last season. Even though the Rams had those four players, that doesn't mean the position couldn't be upgraded. Each one of the four tight ends on the Rams roster has notable weaknesses. So after the jump, lets look at the TE's the Rams have.
The Rams brought in Bajema two years ago to be the Rams blocking TE. Bajema even caught two TD's last season, but he only recorded 14 receptions. You might not get a good receiver out of him, but you get one hell of a blocker. Blocking might not be exciting, but someone has to do it. Plus, and this is a big plus, he's generally been healthy. So even though the Rams can't count on him being a number 1 TE, he will be playing most of the season most likely.
Whats working in his favor? Last season, Josh McDaniels loved to have his tight ends blocking.
What could hurt him next season? He's basically a one-trick pony compared to the young TE's.
Daniel Fells has to be the most consistent TE the Rams have had the last couple of years. Fells hasn't cracked 500 receiving yards in a single season yet. Will Fells wow you on the field with his skills? Nah, he won't won't do that, but he will give you a solid player that could be a good number two. The thing with Fells is that he won't be a liability on the field, but he also won't be much of a playmaker either. However the most important thing to remember about Fells is that he is currently a free agent
Whats working in his favor? Josh tried to court him before. Plus, he gives the Rams a reliable TE who they can plug in and start in any situation.
What could hurt him next season? Well, he is a free agent the Rams could just let him walk.
Fendi has to be the most interesting TE prospect on the Rams roster. He has the physical makeup of a good young receiving TE. With only had one full season of college football, you can imagine he was really raw as a rookie last season. However, even with that bad season, it's Fendi's upside/versatility which makes him real interesting. The Rams need a player who can create mismatches and make an impact. If Fendi can master some route running and get used to the game more, the Rams could have a deadly weapon on their hands.
Whats working in his favor? He has the athleticism and the physical tools you need for an impact TE.
What could hurt him next season? With a new rookie, and a logjam at TE, can the Rams keep Fendi on the active roster? The Rams don't want him to be poached on the practice squad, so seeing him improve to the point that the Rams like his progress is a big key.
Big Mike has shined in his one year on the Rams. Mike is a good blocker like Bajema, and (not only that) he is at least on par with Fells in the receiving department.. Big Mike also showed his versatility in being able to line up as a FB. The best thing about his game is the way he gets open against the defense. Right now, the future looks bright for him. If he has improved over the offseason, I see no reason in him not starting day one as the Rams starting TE.
What's working in his favor? The Rams need a player who can be consistent blocking and receiving at TE, and if last year is any indication, this should be a good year for him.
What could work against him? He has to stay off the injury list to make an impact.
The Rams surprise 2nd round pick, Lance Kendricks could be the playmaker the Rams are looking for. Since we can only evaluate what he has done in college, let's go with the obvious. He was damn good at catching the ball, and he was a good blocker. We don't know what to expect from Lance, but let's hope that he can have the kind of impact that the New England Patriots rookie tight ends did last year.
Whats working in his favor? He was the Rams 2nd round pick and will be given a lot of opportunities to start.
What could work against him? He still is a rookie, and its hard to expect a rookie to come out and have a good year.