I haven't posted most draft posts with the same velocity that I used to. (In fact, I don't post nearly as much as I used to. I'm gradually turning over the bulk of the writing duties here to the larger staff, but more on that later). Let's face it, with those two first rounders and a second rounder, the Rams can do just about anything they want. But out of all the mock drafts I've seen so far, the latest from Dane Brugler at CBS Sports might be the closest I've seen to what I'd call a dream scenario.
Starting in Round 1 ...
No. 16 Tavon Austin, WR, West Virgina
With Danny Amendola jumping to New England, the Rams are in the market for a speedy inside receiver. Austin has the speed and quickness to make plays at all levels of the field and can be a difference-maker for an offense that needs some life.
No argument here. The case for Austin speaks for itself. I know many of our readers feel the same about Cordarrelle Patterson. For me, Austin's much more polished, and I think has a clearer path to success than his bigger counterpart from Tennessee.
It seems doubtful that Austin will be around, but you never know. His size might be the deciding factor that keeps him out of the top 15 picks.
No. 22 Jonanthan Cyprien, S, Florida International
The Rams upgraded their cornerbacks last season through free agency (Cortland Finnegan) and the draft (Janoris Jenkins), but still need help at safety. In 2007 with the Titans, Jeff Fisher drafted a Texas safety in the top-20 (Michael Griffin), it wouldn't be surprising if it happens again in St. Louis this year.
Vaccaro is off the board in this scenario. I like Cyprien, but drafting him would leave me wondering about getting solid coverage at the position. Vaccaro's a super coverage guy; Cyprien is more like Quintin Mikell with more upside, not that that's a bad thing.
The more I look at the safeties, the more I'm starting to like what I see from South Carolina's D.J. Swearinger. Most draft watchers seem to have him pegged as a second-round pick, but he is starting to seep into the first round in some projections. I'm a fan of what he does in coverage, and it seems like a natural fit for the Rams defense.
No. 46 Larry Warford, OG, Kentucky
The Rams upgraded their tackle situation with Jake Long -- time to add young talent at guard.
I like Chance Warmack and Jonathan Cooper a lot. I'm less crazy about using the 16th pick on either one of them, because I'm still under the belief that the Rams can find guard value elsewhere later in the draft. Could they find Larry Warford waiting for them in the second round? It might not be possible at No. 46, but a trade up in the second for Warford would be a worthwhile move.
Alright, you see why I'm spending 500 words on this mock draft ... it would be a dream come true for the Rams with their first three picks.