Mock Draft season is upon us and I decided to take a shot at getting my opinions out there. Obviously, as was very clearly seen last year, it is extremely difficult to mock accurately with all the trades and shock decisions that occur on Draft Day so this is more who I personally would be very satisfied to see in a Rams uniform next year. I hope you enjoy.
Round 1, Pick 16 - Chance Warmack, OG, Alabama [6-3, 320]
In my opinion, this young man is the safest pick in a draft full of doubt. A wall of pure power who can drive back defensive linemen, he would be an anchor on this line for years to come. There's a reason why Alabama running backs of the past few years have been so successful. I view Warmack in the same way I viewed Luke Kuechly last year; he isn't going to be a top 5 pick, but the team that gets him is going to have a stud. Kuechly dropped to #9 last year so hopefully Warmack will still be there at #16
Round 1, Pick 22 (from Redskins) - Kenny Vaccaro, S, Texas [6-1, 215]
One of my favourite prospects in the draft. We need replacements at Safety for Quintin Mikell who's owed a hefty wage and for Craig Dahl who's, well, just incompetent. He's an electric defender who can lay a big hit and was a defensive anchor for the Longhorns. Near perfect physical attributes and great instincts. A further improvement to our awesome secondary.
Round 2, Pick 46 - Justin Hunter, WR, Tennessee [6-4, 200]
Once projected as a sure-fire top 15 pick, a knee injury has marred many people's perception of Hunter. He's slowly regaining his speed (we will know for certain at the Draft Combine), he has great size and sure hands. It is extremely evident that WR help is needed and, if kept in check, Hunter could be the answer. If Brian Quick can develop in the offseason we could be looking at a situation similar to the Chargers' former duo of Vincent Jackson and Malcolm Floyd - two big bodied receivers causing major mismatches and nightmares in the red zone.
Round 3, Pick 78 - Bacarri Rambo, S, Georgia [6-0, 218]
Man this guy is fun to watch. Fantastic closing speed and not afraid to get physical and take someone down, literally: ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MmM0ouZXVG8 ). Two safeties might seem strange but we can upgrade at both safety positions. Off the field issues held him back but he returned strongly and, if groomed well by Jeff Fisher, himself and Vaccaro could be very similar to Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor of the Seahawks. A quality prospect with tonnes of potential to fit right in with our hard-nosed defense.
Round 4, Pick 110 - Gerald Hodges, OLB, Penn State [6-2, 234]
Hodges is the definition of a solid pick; solid production in a 4-3 scheme similar to the Rams, great tackling ability and good size. He is and underrated prospect who could be the missing link in our defense. Plug him in alongside Jo-Lonn and JL55 and you have yourself a mouth-watering LB group.
Round 5, Pick 142 - Gavin Escobar, TE, San Diego State [6-6, 255]
This guy has gone through his college career relatively unknown but could pay off big time for us. Good size, good athleticism and good hands. His blocking can be improved but he could turn into a great weapon for Sam. A lot of people seem to be pushing for Eifert or Ertz in the early rounds but I, for one, am not ready to give up on Lance Kendricks just yet. He was slightly less productive this season but his sophomore season was extremely impressive (Junior: 42 rec, 543 yrd, 6 td - Sophomore: 51 rec, 780 yrd, 7 td) If Escobar progresses nicely we could have ourselves a fantastic twin TE set to take pressure off our shaky WR core.
Round 6, Pick 174 - Rex Burkhead, RB, Nebraska [5-11, 210]
For starters let me just say; this guy does not get the attention he deserves. A mildly sprained knee ligament messed around his season but don't let that fool you. He was a very effective pass catcher as well as tough runner for the Cornhuskers and reminds me a bit of another head, Danny Woodhead, but more powerful. He would be a great prospect to throw into our mix of RBs.
Round 7, Pick 206 - Montori HUghes, DT, Tennessee-Martin (formerly of Tennessee) [6-4, 327]
Kicked off the Tennessee team for off the field issues, he has an interesting blend of athletic ability and size. Another player that, if kept in check, could contribute to the team. (Senior: 42 tck, 8.5 tfl, 4 sck)
Thank you very much for reading. I hope you thought it was interesting. Any feedback is greatly appreciated, and GO RAMS! #NFCWestChampions2013