2013 NFL mock draft: Is a trade up worth it for the Rams?

Al Messerschmidt

There is growing speculation that the Rams could move up in the draft. Is it worth it?

The St. Louis Rams would never move up in the 2013 NFL Draft, right? More and more prognosticators are wondering if the Rams might just move up to acquire a player they want. That player, for most, seems to be Tavon Austin, the West Virginia receiving phenom.

Josh Norris at Rotoworld.com posted a mock draft on Monday that tackles that possibility. He has the Rams swapping the 16th pick with the Tennessee Titans for pick No. 10. And with that pick, they take Austin.

I believe the Rams have narrowed down their early pick to Austin or DeAndre Hopkins. I'm not sure Hopkins is available at No. 16, so the Rams could move up to select the dynamic "plus" slot target here.

In all likelihood, Hopkins will be there when it comes to the Rams at No. 16. They would have to be especially convinced of Austin's uniqueness in order to spend a third-round pick, if not more, to move up six spots in the first-round order. Even the 10th spot might not be enough with the Jets owning the ninth pick.

I really like what Austin can do on the field. That said, I'm not so sure he's the kind of player that merits a move into the top 10 picks. It's risky proposition, Then again, no risk, no reward ... or something like that.

Further down the list in Norris' mock, the Rams hang onto the No. 22 pick and select Jonathan Cooper. I had to share this, because it's an awfully intriguing option for the Rams.

Here's Norris:

Cooper could be selected much higher, but I am always wary of placing interior offensive lineman early in the first-round. However, there is some buzz around Cooper possibly playing center, which is more coveted than guard.

The Rams need a guard more than they need a center, and that's where Cooper would play in St. Louis, for this year at least. However, Scott Wells' health has been an issue and he's 32. It'd be nice to have a top-flight lineman capable of manning either position in the middle.

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