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Sunday Morning Musings

Based on this tidbit from the PD, it sounds like the Rams are still in play for Kris Jenkins. It's unlikely that anything will happen before the draft, as Carolina is holding out for too much - a first round pick reportedly.

The same article cites team sources as saying that acquiring Ricky Williams isn't going to happen. While I thought the novelty value of having Ricky would be great, he is aging and has been injury prone in the last few years.

Rumors about Michigan DT Alan Branch having stress fractures in his leg a bogus, classic predraft rumor mongering. Via Scott Wright at the NFL Draft blog:

There are rumors circulating that Alan Branch has stress fractures in his legs but I have made some calls and from everything I can gather they don't appear to be true. Branch does have shin splints, like a lot of big guys do, and everyone has known about that for a while and they actually hindered him in his pre-draft training and at his Pro Day workout. However, Branch checked out fine medically at the Scouting Combine and was not asked back for a re-check, as he would have been if there was an issue. So why is this stuff making the rounds right now?

  With the draft so close this is probably a classic case of misinformation being put out there by a team hoping that he will fall to them in round one. The bottom line is that Branch's stock is falling a bit and it looks like the earliest he may go is Houston at #10 or St. Louis at #13 but his drop is not due to fractured legs. Personally, I'm keeping him as my #1 defensive tackle (ahead of Amobi Okoye) because the simple fact is you don't find guys that big and athletic very often.

Personally, I think Branch or Okoye would fit our needs just fine. Although, I wonder if with Branch's size, he wouldn't be the better fit since he could step in and naturally play NT. The difference, besides size, between the two seems mostly to be their pass rushing ability, with Okoye having more skill and potential for that role than Branch. I think the age (Okoye is 19 remember) issue and development time has kept Okoye as the #2 DT prospect. The Rams, obviously, need a NT to bolster that run defense. We're going nowhere unless we fix that run defense; although, the idea of having an eilte pass rushing defense is attractive and Haslett likes that as well. Branch may not have the quickness to be an elite pass rusher, but by drawing blockers he frees up ends and LBs to do their repsective jobs. Let's also not forget his height, by throwing his arms up he takes away a good portion of an opposing QB's field of vision.

Okoye or Branch? I wouldn't say no to either one of them.