Hello Rams fans. I recently took part in the Pride of Detroit community mock draft. It's only a 2 round deal but I'm wondering what y'all thought about the picks I made for St Louis. There were no trades allowed, or I would have been looking to move on the 1st pick at least. I really hope you check it out and at least give a grade in the poll section. I'd love to hear back from y'all on what you like, dislike, or would have done differently.
So here's the picks and the write ups I submitted. At the end I'll put the list of who was taken so you can see who was available at the time of my selection.
#6 David DeCastro OG Stanford
This pick is the coup de grâce of a three-year endeavor to create a dominant OL that has spanned two front offices. DeCastro is one of the most surefire OL picks in recent memory and will have a huge impact on this unit. The impact of this pick is likely to extend its influence past his position by salvaging past drafts as well! His presence, amplified by the
addition theft of C Scott Wells from Green Bay, will have a redeeming factor for last year's 33rd pick, LT Rodger Saffold. It might even be far reaching enough to light a fire under perceived bust of the second overall pick in 2009, Jason Smith. With a line that is likely to read (left to right) as Saffold, DeCastro, Wells, Dahl and Smith, a unit of pitiful weakness now becomes potentially elite.
Beyond the impact of this addition on the OL directly, it will also elevate the play of the entire offense! This future Pro-Bowl guard will be instrumental in opening up huge holes for Steven Jackson, therefore increasing his production and perhaps extending his career. Having the strength, intelligence and versatility in play of this dominant OL will also play heavily in preventing 2010 No. 1 overall pick Sam Bradford from getting shell shocked as well as crippled. That extra time and comfort will play huge in giving the WR corps time to develop plays and let Bradford's skill shine.
While some are sure to think this is a reach, it isn't anything other than the drafting of the clear and glaring BPA. This is selecting a future Pro-Bowler who will impact many offensive plays, and structure, for many, many seasons to follow. That is a value at any level of pick.
Shea McClellin OLB/DE Boise State
With a first-time general manager in Les Snead, a new but controlling head coach in Jeff Fisher, and no defensive coordinator eligible, it's a daunting task to try and predict what direction the Rams will go in this draft. Having the dominant talent of Shea McClellin, a DE/OLB from Boise State, available helps make the choice a lot easier! With so many parts of this team very much in limbo, the flexibility and playmaking ability McClellin offers is the final selling point in making him the clear choice for this pick.
The state of the Rams LB corps is pretty dismal. It amounts to a bunch of special teams players surrounding the talented young James Laurinaitis in the middle. Shea brings much needed talent to this situation. He brings the proven ability to drop into man and hang with almost any TE along with the strength to not get bullied by them. He also has shown solid ability in the run game. He's able to take on lead blockers well and diagnose lanes. While providing good coverage and run support, he also has the ability to be a thumper and deliver a hit they'll all remember. He's shown to be highly instinctual and is able to put himself around the ball so he will make plays in all areas of the game. Shea also has experience playing as a middle linebacker and performed well at it. This means he can also be a valued option to slide over to the middle in case something happens to Laurinaitis. It's just a part of the experience and flexibility he brings.
Shea also has experience playing with his hand down in their 4-3 look! At his current 255-pound weight, he's a bit light for this role, but has the potential to add more and not take too much off of his game. While I don't see that as being a likely scenario for him anymore (I was first sold on him as a 4-3 DE), it is still an option. The Rams have some solid talent at DE so they likely won't have to call upon Shea to make this change.
Shea is probably best known for his ability to get after the QB. Many project him to be a 3-4 OLB instead but that might not utilize his full skill set. This just adds to his versatility in how the Rams will be able to use him. If Gregg Williams were to be the DC (which won't happen), he would fall in love with this added dimension to bring blitzes. No matter what DC is brought in I'm confident Shea will get plenty of opportunity to show this area of his game whether it's standing or his hand on the ground.
There are many fans clamoring for the Rams to bring in a play maker on the offense at this point. While that is a need, what they get with this pick is a solid play maker for the defense. His high motor and drive will help bring long needed respectability to this unit. There will bTe other opportunities to help the other side of the ball in the draft. At this point in the draft the talent level Shea brings is unrivaled.
#39 Alameda Ta'amu DT Washington
As I mentioned in the No. 33 pick write-up, the new front office and coaching staff make predicting the picks for the Rams a difficult task. The one thing we do know about the new coach, Jeff Fisher, is he values a strong defense and in particular places high value on dominant line play. With 2/3 of the picks in the first two rounds, they are making great strides to build from the lines out. So with the 39th pick, it's a pleasure to bring in the imposing Alameda Ta'amu, a defensive tackle of Washington.
To put it bluntly, Ta'amu is a monster coming in at 6'2", 348 lbs. He's as strong as you might expect and is able to eat up double teams. While he is able to get under linemen and gain push to collapse the pocket, he isn't likely to be a sackmaster by any means. For such a big man, he is able to work to secure the edge surprisingly well when the play moves outside. He's also got very solid hands and generally gets the stop once he gets a hand on the carrier. This line just got a whole lot better against the run, and as he develops, his technique will likely be considered well above average.
This OL-eating force will work out extremely well next to new addition Kendall Langford, who plays the three technique and is formerly of the Bengals. The addition of fellow 1T DT Trevor Laws should help in his development in giving him a competent player to be used in the rotation. This offseason's work of building the interior line is going to pay huge dividends for the progression of Chris Long and Robert Quinn at DE, and we can expect a big year from them. Solidifying this unit will also prove valuable for newly drafted OLB Shea McClellin and returning MLB James Laurinaitis on blitz packages. While they could benefit from added rotational depth at DE, this line is now looking very competitive. That's a refreshing change for this long-struggling unit.
Here's the list of selections through 38
1. Andrew Luck
20. Whitney Mercilus
21. Devon Still
22. Ryan Tannehill
23. Janoris Jenkins
24. Mark Barron
25. Brandon Thompson
26. Coby Fleener
27. Nick Perry
28. Stephon Gilmore
29. Dont'a Hightower
30. Stephen Hill
31. Peter Konz
32. Kendall Wright
33. Shea McClellin
34. Alshon Jeffery
35. Chase Minnifield
36. Doug Martin
37. David Wilson
38. Rueben Randle
So what do you think? If the draft played out like that would you be happy? What would you have done differently?
155 votes total