For the first time since 2007, the St. Louis Rams enter the NFL Draft with some flexibility. Picking 14th overall rather than first or second gives GM Billy Devaney and his personnel team some options.
It's widely assumed that the Rams will take a wide receiver with that pick. However, fans need to be fully prepared for the possibility that the Rams might not have a receiver available at the 14th spot in the draft.
The draft gods have preordained that A.J. Green will not be there when the Rams pick; he might not be there when the Broncos pick second. TST favorite Julio Jones looks unlikely to fall that far himself. Without the top two receivers in the draft on the board, the remaining candidates invite nothing but debate about whether or not they're viable candidates to be picked in that spot.
Oklahoma State WR Justin Blackmon has yet to declare; he has until Saturday to decide whether or not to play his junior season. Beyond Blackmon, there isn't much consensus around whether or not the other round one possibilities are worth the 14th pick. Notre Dame's Michael Floyd might be too much of a possession receiver. Jonathan Baldwin lacks the speed and route running ability to justify a high pick, in the opinions of some. And that's really about it, at least until the combine when someone runs a fast 40 that puts them in the conversation, merited or not.
So what happens if the Rams can't get a receiver in that spot? Given where they are now, the timeless trope of "best player available" comes into play, despite it's nebulous definition. We've talked about the possibility of a defensive lineman with the first round pick, but what if a player who seems redundant is sitting there for the Rams' taking. What if it's Alabama RB Mark Ingram, as someone suggested today on Twitter (Or Illinois' RB Mikel Leshoure, who some say is the better back)?
Ok, it sounds kind of farcical. I'm just throwing this out there to get some draft talk going to pass the time on a Tuesday afternoon.