Good afternoon fellow Ram fans,
I know at this point a lot of people are sick of mock drafts and just want the real thing to take place. Unfortunately, the reality is the draft is not for another couple months, and plenty more mock drafts will be written (Yay!)
We are sitting pretty in this draft, prettiest of all teams I will argue. This is because with the #2 selection in a very deep draft, I believe we can trade with anybody in the top 15, pick up additional draft choices, and still land impact players. My personal preference is that the Rams do not make a trade out of the top 8. If we can trade back and still pick from 3-8, there is no doubt in my mind we can still land an impact player, as well as another piece to the puzzle with the pick we receive.
**Note: In this mock my trade scenarios will not involve future draft choices. For example if a scenario involves the Rams trading pick 1.02, I will only include the haul in this draft class, not "as well as a 2015 second round pick".**As of now the Rams have selections: 1.02, 1.13, 2.44, 3.75, 4.106, 5.141, 6.172 & 7.203
In this particular mock, I have the Rams trading with the Falcons, who then use their selection to take DE Jadaveon Clowney. The Falcons in return give us picks 1.06, 2.37 & 5.135. Unsatisfied with this haul, Les Snead then flips picks 2.37 and 2.44 to the San Diego Chargers for pick 1.25. This puts us ahead of the Cleveland Browns, who after selecting a quarterback with their first choice are upset that the Rams jumped them and could take an offensive weapon which they have longed for. New GM Ray Farmer is blamed for this whole deal, and the Browns send him packing, along with Head Coach Mike Pettine, just because they love being in the headlines (sorry to any Browns fans who read here, I couldn't resist)
Anyway, with all this trading the Rams now own 1.06, 1.13, 1.25, 3.75, 4.106, 5.135, 5.141, 6.172 & 7.203
1.06- Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn: I know a lot of people do not want the Rams to go O-Line with their first selection, and some will even point out the fact that Jeff Fisher doesn't take offensive lineman in the first round. If the phrase nothing lasts forever applied anywhere better, I have yet to find it (exaggerating, but only a little!). The Rams would be hard pressed not to take Robinson here, especially because his unique blend of power and athleticism is very rare. His strong suit is run blocking, which is exactly where Jake Long excelled on the blindside last season. I believe the Rams should take Robinson here and let him play the left side. His pass protection is not bad, however can now only be considered average at best. Playing him at LT until Jake Long gets back and kicking him inside may be effective for year one, where he can use his power to dominate interior lineman. With Barksdale a free agent in 2015 it is likely Robinson takes over outside, however that material will be saved for a post next year. After reading that this pick will still probably be debated, however when a prospect is compared to the legendary Larry Allen, you DO NOT pass on him especially when the need is there.
1.13- HaHa Clinton-Dix, FS, Alabama: Both him and Robinson played in one of the most hate filled rivalries in college football, however will become teammates before the first 15 picks in the draft are made. I slotted Clinton-Dix to the Rams here in my previous draft and I am sticking by it, no matter how much steam Calvin Pryor gains. There are questions about Pryor's coverage ability, and after watching the likes of Quintin Mikell and Craig Dahl(don't let your eyes burn!!) try and cover, its about time we fix that area. Not only does Clinton-Dix's superior coverage skills make him the ideal pick here, but he is also a tremendously smooth athlete and can flip his hips in no time, covering ground and also making plays at the line of scrimmage. He is also a dream scheme fit for Gregg Williams, who sends pressure even when winning 59-0 on rookie difficulty in Madden 25. HaHa can play the single high safety while T.J Mcdonald acts as the fourth linebacker, creating an Earl Thomas over-the-top type presence which would make quarterbacks think twice about throwing it.
1.25- Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M: Every year there are always prospects who go lower than they should, or are passed over in favour of others with a similar position. Due to the fact this is a deep wide receiver class, teams will be willing to wait on most prospects, aware they can grab quality in the second round, and even third. With all the buzz surrounding Odell Beckham Jr right now and the freakish potential for Kelvin Benjamin, I think Mike Evans becomes the fourth for fifth wideout taken, and the Rams will gladly take him. A 6'5 wideout who runs a 4.5 is exactly what the Rams need and don't have (yet? Looking at you BQ). Evans has great body control and a solid pair of hands, two things which are on the Rams roster, however not in the same wideout. Evans can also be a constant threat in the redzone, and his ability to work back to the quarterback is exactly what Sam needs, considering his tendency to pull it down and look for the short-intermediate routes.
3.75- Telvin Smith, OLB, Florida State: Smith is more of a second round type talent, however I believe he will drop in the draft for a couple of reasons. For one he is an outside linebacker at 218 Lbs. Also, he does not want to play any other position and some teams will struggle to find a place for this kid. Not the Rams, where they will be getting a steal. Smith is a cannon off the edge, ideal for teams who love to blitz their linebackers (hmm). He also has the speed to cover the field, and an explosive first step with a violent finish. It is also beneficial that he can drop into cover, and use his sped and aggression to fly to the ball and make plays. Despite his smallish stature he is an absolute energizer bunny out on the field, hyping up the unit and giving it his all on every single snap. The Rams could plug him into one of their starting linebacker slots, where they will have two athletic linebackers capable of chasing down the mobile quarterbacks (especially Carson Palmer) in the division.
4.106- Chris Watt, OG, Notre Dame: I'm not sure if its because he went to Notre Dame or not, but this guy is one of Mike Mayock's favourite guards in the upcoming draft. After watching his tape I see a guard who is well balanced and can move a little bit, however makes his money by using his initial punch to block lineman, and not let them past. His only downfall in the interior will be a little bit of a struggle if he is on an island, however because of his position this will not happen often. Coaches and teammates considered him a high effort player, something you love to have along the line. Also, because he went to a Catholic school you know that last line is true, so its unlikely he will dog it once he makes it into the NFL.
5.135- Ricardo Allen, CB, Purdue: If we are so determined to replace Cortland Finnegan on the back end (and rightfully so) why not do it with a player who plays similarly to he does? Finnegan, when effective, was an in-your-face type corner who was especially excellent in the slot, aggressive on every play, and believed the ball was his no matter what. That is exactly Ricardo Allen, except Allen also has a knack for returning balls to the end zone. Many will point to his lack of strength, however I believe aggression outweighs strength in the slot, which is where he would stick to. I chose to address corner this low because I believe wight the scheme change, both Jenkins and Tru will be able to excel as man corners, plus playing Rodney McLeod in the slot would not be the worst thing in the world either.
5.141- Brett Smith, QB, Wyoming: This guy could be a solid backup for the Rams for years to come, and a great grab late in the draft. He is essentially a better, more mobile version of our current backup, who's name I will not spell for the fear of starting a spelling debate. Smith is quick and elusive in the pocket, has a solid body build, and can recognize soft spots in his reads before and during the snap. It is only on the run which his flaws show, however that can be addressed. Smith would undoubtedly go higher if he played in a better conference, however I am thankful he didn't as he would be a solid backup for years to come.
6.172- Shamar Stephen, DT, Connecticut: Stephen is a massive man at just under 310 pounds and uses that huge frame to be quite the effective run stuffer. He is able to hold his own and is active in search for the ball carrier, doing what he can to bring him down if the opportunity presents itself rather than just hold his gap. At this point he is not really a pass rusher, however possesses sufficient quickness to be able to put the occasional pressure on the quarterback. With Langford and Brockers established as our starting defensive tackles, Stephen can rotate as the third tackle, coming in on goal-line situations as well as providing an effective presence when either tackle needs a breather.
7.203- Aaron Lynch, DE, USF: In terms of talent, Lynch is without a doubt a top 50 pick. In terms of effort, Lynch wouldn't even make a peewee football team. This kid has everything you want from a size, speed, and length standpoint, however offers nothing you want to see in terms of discipline and passion for the game. A former Notre Dame standout, Lynch would give up on plays because he just wasn't interested, and take plays off for the heck of it. That being said, his physical tools are worth a shot in round 7, especially because as a role player he would be able to take plays off without consequence. Jeff Fisher always says you can't have enough pass rusher, and here's another one to add to the stable.
Thank you for reading, and Go Rams!