Trading down got easier for the St. Louis Rams on Friday after Baylor quarterback wowed the audience in the Combine's most important test: the press conference. According to Tony Pauline of SI.com, the Rams want to move down and have already had some early trade talk with the Washington Redskins.
Pauline's report jives with Adam Schefter's report earlier in the week that the Rams have already talked to a few teams about the possibility of trading down from the second pick. This is the first report that mentions a specific potential trade partner.
The difference in the two reports is the tone. Pauline makes it sound as though the Rams are desperate to trade down; Schefter paints the picture of a team fielding calls from franchises desperate to rebuild.
Early trade talks would hardly be out of character for Les Snead, the Rams' new general manager. While he was the director of player personnel in Atlanta, the Falcons got an early start exploring their options to move up in the draft to pick Alabama wide receiver Julio Jones.
"Two weeks before the draft is when we started talking to teams and trying to figure out if they were willing," Snead explained. "That was a monumental, probably unprecedented type trade. So a team had to be willing to come way back. That process took a couple weeks to talk to a couple different teams. Then we also, during that process, we had to figure out, ‘OK, if we go here, is the one or two guys we really want, or the one guy we really want, is he going to fall there. So you're going through all those possibilities and hope you get it right."
Snead noted that the experience prepared him for the possibilities of trading down in this year's draft.
Trading with the Redskins would swap first-round picks, with the Rams moving to the sixth spot, but that would hardly be the only reward from trading down. Other teams are expected to be interested in moving up to draft Robert Griffin III. Finding the highest bidder will be important. The possibilities have been a hot topic at Rams Park.
"I've been here a week and a half," Snead said. "We discuss it every day. We have to analyze every option and then decide if that's the best option for the St. Louis Rams going forward."
Swinging a deal ahead of the draft is also a possibility, one that would give the Rams more certainty about their spot in the draft and the options available.
"If we're in a situation where we've got another member club that's expressed interest, and the deal's good, it could be done before the draft," head coach Jeff Fisher said.
"It's a great opportunity," Fisher said of having the second pick. "It will define the immediate and hopefully the long-term future of this franchise. We have a lot of options and we're going to be prepared to do whatever."