While we await the kickoff of the 2013/2014 NFL postseason, 20 of the league’s 32 teams are already preparing for next year. For those who are no longer fortunate enough to cheer their team on to a potential Super Bowl victory, we prognosticate. We spend an inordinate amount of time blissfully spewing projections as armchair GM’s. I started the upcoming exercise late last January - when the Rams found themselves under similar circumstances - and it seemed to be an enjoyable [and insightful] activity. And much like stepbrothers making bunk beds, the NFL offseason provides ample room for activities. We’ll start with the offense…
We’ll be using 27 for the amount of offensive players signed to the 2014 roster [based on the amount/depth of players from 2013]. Clearly, that could change by the time the team announces their final 53-man roster. It’s 27 for today.
Before I let you loose on the fun, here are a few things to note:
* First and foremost, these starters are penciled in by yours truly, and I understand Jeff Fisher isn’t looking for my blessing on the starting roster. I’ve made them starters because I think they’ve earned the job, and aren’t free agents.
* I purposely placed Sam Bradford as the team’s backup. You guys like it when I say an NFL Quarterback "is the most important position in all of sports"…so I’ll say it again. If you want my thoughts on the matter, I’d say he’s the starter in September. But stranger things have happened, and there are plenty of folks that would make good use of the 2nd overall pick on a QB. Have at it. Otherwise, just state which direction you’d go with the backup [FA/Draft].
* There are several Rams’ players who will be competing against free agents and rookies to earn a spot as a backup in 2014. The "Potential" players underneath each position will display "free agents" and "rookies." Links to free agents will direct you to the list of 2014 FA's - on Spotrac - for that particular position [If you’re not familiar, the site is great for player contracts, and how keeping/cutting them could impact the team]. The "Rookies" link[s] will direct you to CBS Sports, which is sorted and ranked by position for the 2014 draft class.
It may sound odd, but I see 20 of the team’s 27 offensive players being up for grabs; at least in terms of depth. I appreciate the competition. The majority of those positions, though, will be filled with players currently on the active roster. But in what capacity? Who is the team’s backup RB? Who’s going to get more snaps in 2014: Brian Quick or Austin Pettis? Will both of them even be on the roster? What will happen across the Rams’ offensive line…which has only one guaranteed starter…who’s also coming off of season-ending injury? The 2013 rookie class performed admirably in 2013…are they going to be supplanted by draft picks from 2014?
You be the judge. Who can build the best - albeit realistic - roster for the 2014 Rams?
Starter: Zac Stacy
Potentially: Isaiah Pead, Daryl Richardson, Benny Cunningham, Chase Reynolds, Free Agent, or Rookie