Ok, so in case you missed it, the Rams breezed through rounds one and two yesterday, and in pretty spectacular fashion [if I must say so myself]. The team took great strides between preseason and last week’s season finale. With that being said, the work of a hapless Armchair GM never ends.
I’ve lured Fisher and Snead back out of the War Room with a basket of Vidal Sassoon and switchblade mustache combs. The Rams are on the clock in the 3rd round. Here’s what went down on day one:
1A. (16) Eric Fisher - OT - Central Michgan
- 6’8" - 305 lbs.
- First Team All-MAC
- NFL.com Draft Prospect Grade: 88.3
- NFL Player Comparison: Joe Staley
1B. (22) Tavon Austin - WR - West Virginia
- 5’9" - 174 lbs.
- AP All-American, First Team
- NFL.com Draft Prospect Grade: 80.4
- NFL Player Comparison: Dexter McCluster
2. (48) Eric Reid - S - LSU
- 6’2" - 212 lbs
- AP All-American, Second Team
- Displays instinct and athleticism
- NFL Player Replacing: Craig Dahl
...Oh yea, you were looking for the meat-and-potatoes of this mock draft update; rounds 3 and 4. The Rams are now on the clock in round three. The offensive line has been bolstered, but there’s probably still work to be done. Regardless of what happens in free agency, the Rams have an electric speedster who can contribute immediately on offense and special teams. Lastly, a secondary that was solid in 2012 - despite it’s youth - could have found it’s missing link. What’s an average Joe who just so happens to be making draft selections for an NFL team to do?
3.16 (80) - Chase Thomas, OLB, Stanford
James Laurinaitis is a mainstay for this defense, and Jo-Lonn Dunbar proved to be a blessing in disguise. The front seven for the Rams defense is very close to be top tier in the NFL. If there’s one position on the defensive front that could be upgraded, it’s OLB…You want to know what NFL Draft Scout has to say about it?
[Thomas] has been selected First Team All-Pac-12 for the 2012 college football season. Thomas for a second straight year has earned All-Pac-12 honors by leading a Stanford defense with historic accomplishments, including leading the nation in rushing defense and recording three of the school's top 10 performances against the run in three straight weeks. Thomas ranks second on the team in tackles (4.83) while recording 12.0 tackles for loss and 5.5 sacks. He has forced two fumbles and recovered another fumble for a touchdown at Notre Dame.
4.16 (112) - Joseph Fauria, TE, UCLA
Yeah, I know you saw Stanford play in the Rose Bowl. And I’m pretty positive you were swayed by the long bomb Ertz caught early in the game. What’s not to be excited about? A reliable pass-catching tight end has been a void in St. Louis for some time. The Rams have some speedy weapons now. A large, sure handed receiving option is probably something Sam Bradford can grow to appreciate. I could be wrong, but Mr. Fauria could assist this offense in more than one way. Bolstering the line and becoming an immediate red zone threat - because he’s, you know, 6’7" - are a pretty good start. CBS Sports weighs in…
Fauria's value lies in his ability as a mismatch in the passing game. While not a speed threat in the Jimmy Graham mold, Fauria shows impressive flexibility and agility as a route-runner, soft hands to make tough catches and the combination of strength, fluidity and leaping ability (see Stanford, 2011) to be a "Bruin" after the catch. With just nine career starts entering the 2012 season, Fauria remains rough around the edges and far from a first round lock but the physical upside is such that he's currently ranked as NFLDraftScout.com's top senior tight end in the country.
…when both mustache and hair had been finely tended to, the true Rams’ brass gave a quick knock on the door. There was a bit of silence, which was uncomfortable for a moment, but then I realized that I just had Cheeto shrapnel stuck in my beard.
The three of us performed the Fresh Prince of Bel Air greeting, and I headed to the funnel cake stand….knowing I’d be back for rounds 5 and 6.
Thanks, as always, for stopping by Turf Show Times. If you’re back [again] then you might want to seek professional help. It’s contagious! More cowbell won’t cure you, but you can seek further super-serious medical guidance on my Twitter machine.