Todd McShay released his early bird 2012 NFL mock draft. It's bound to frustrate fans of the St. Louis Rams. No, the pick itself isn't likely to be the major quibble, but rather their place in the draft, specifically their place in the draft vis-a-vis the other NFC West teams.
McShay has the Rams picking 12th. Yes, I question that, but the real problem is that the other three division teams pick before them. Does McShay not see anyone winning the NFC West next season? It's become pretty obvious that McShay and Kiper, while they may do their homework scouting (not), they clearly phone it in when it comes to their mocks and other posts at ESPN. Shameless. Back to the pick...
The Rams get their running back. After passing on Alabama RB Mark Ingram in the first round last this year, they opt for his replacement Trent Richardson.
Richardson has a rare combination of size, power and burst, and he piled up more than 1,800 yards of total offense the past two seasons while sharing time with 2011 first-round pick Mark Ingram.
It's an interesting pick, as the Rams go back to offense in the first round. Devaney failed, so far, to find a backup for Steven Jackson after having several potential long-term replacements on the draft board. Richardson would definitely be that player. Would Jackson stick around in 2012? Depending on what happens with the cap in the next CBA, assuming there is one by then, they may not opt to keep a $7 million salary on the books.
Here's McShay's complete mock:
1. Cleveland - QB Andrew Luck
2. Carolina - DE Quinton Couples
3. Washington - QB Matt Barkley
4. Buffalo - OT Matt Kalil
5. Denver - DT Jerel Worthy
6. Arizona - DE Donte Paige-Moss
7. Seattle - WR Alshon Jeffery
8. Tennessee - CB Jayron Housley
9. Oakland - OT Jonathan Martin
10. Cincinnati - CB Janoris Jenkins
11. San Fran - CB Dre Kirkpatrick
12. St. Louis - RB Trent Richardson
13. Minnesota - DT Marcus Forston
14. Jacksonville - LB Luke Kuechly
15. Miami - QB Landry Jones
16. Detroit - CB Stephon Gilmore
17. KC - LB Manti Te'o
18. Tampa - LB Zac Brown
19. Chicago - WR Justin Blackmon
20. Houston - S Ray-Ray Armstrong
21. Dallas - CB Cliff Harris
22. San Diego - LB Vontaze Burfict
23. NYG - LB Keenan Robinson
24. Philadelphia - LB Travis Lewis
25. NYJ - DE Brandon Jenkins
26. Cleveland - OT Mike Adams
27. Baltimore - S Robert Lester
28. New England - DE Andre Branch
29. Indy - WR Jeff Fuller
30. Pittsburgh - OT Kelechi Osemele
31. New England - DT Jared Crick
32. Green Bay - CB Chase Minnefield