You read the headline right. Sports Illustrated's Don Banks has the Rams taking Memphis DT Dontari Poe with the number six pick in the 2012 NFL Draft.
Prior to the Rams, Matt Kalil, Justin Blackmon and Morris Claiborne came off the board. So what's Banks' rationale for the Rams taking the 6'3", 346-pound Poe?
The Rams' fervent hope is that Blackmon falls to them, but in this scenario their luck will have run out for the first time this draft season. St. Louis will rebound by selecting the fast-rising Poe, whose freakish blend of size, speed and athleticism was one of the big stories coming out of the combine. New Rams head coach Jeff Fisher will have found himself a younger and more athletic version of Albert Haynesworth to put in the middle of his defense.
It's a bit of an odd choice, though a solid prospect.
Thoughts after the jump.
Poe moves insanely well for his size, but it's that qualifier ("for his size") that's of concern. Why do you want a 346-pound DT to run fast? Who cares? If he's running fast, either he's picked up a fumble for a #FATMANTOUCHDOWN , or he's chasing down a running back (who's already much faster than him) going a direction that defensive tackles shouldn't be going. And given his size, he's not terribly powerful. I didn't see him exhibit the kind of strength that Terrence Cody did at Alabama.
And while Poe didn't have an incredibly productive college career, he was double teamed often on a pitiful Memphis team (and defensive line); in the 2011 season, Memphis was outscored 458-158. Ouch.
Nevertheless, it's not a pick I'm comfortable with at #6.
Shifting gears, when Banks is commenting on inside news, I listen. You caught that first line, right? Let's rewind:
The Rams' fervent hope is that Blackmon falls to them...
All you Blackmon fans may be getting your wish if he can drop out of the top 5.
But let's keep it on Poe and defensive tackles for this post. What's your thoughts about Poe? And no, don't feel bad if you didn't catch any Memphis games this year. Feel bad if you're like me and watched them thrice. And then watched another game on tape. And then had to shower to get the "dirty" off after watching Memphis football.
And why Poe over other DTs, like Michael Brockers, Fletcher Cox or Devon Still who seem to be the other top DTs on most peoples boards and/or mocks? Over at MTD, Poe's ranked the top 3-4 NT, but is 4th among all 4-3 DTs.
Is there a defensive tackle you feel comfortable with at #6? How would you like the Rams to address the position in the draft? Is it gross that I put hot sauce on damn near everything, including pancakes and in my coffee?
The world needs your answers.