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2015 NFL Supplemental Draft: Why Did The St. Louis Rams Draft Isaiah Battle?

Taking a look at what motivated the Rams to take Clemson OT Isaiah Battle in the fifth round of the 2015 NFL Supplemental Draft.

Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

After drafting four offensive linemen in the 2015 NFL Draft less than two months ago, the Rams decided that four was not enough and that they needed more youth on the offensive line. Today, the Rams made offensive tackle Isaiah Battle from Clemson the first player since Josh Gordon was drafted in 2012 to be drafted in the NFL Supplemental Draft.

Why was Battle In The Supplemental Draft

Throughout his collegiate career, Battle has had problems.

In 2013, Battle was suspended for one game for punching a player. In 2014, he sat out the opening drive against Florida State for missing a team meeting. Then in late October, he was suspended for disciplinary reasons that were never disclosedAs recently as June 11 of this year, Battle was cited for possession of marijuana.

Publicly, Battle has stated he was entering the draft for family reasons, but it appears the real reason for entering the draft was because of the marijuana citation, which was his final strike with the team.

How good is Battle?

Well that depends on who you ask. The majority of websites state that Battle should have been a third or fourth round selection, but he could have went in the second round of the 2016 NFL Draft.

Josh Norris, a former scout for the Rams now a writer for NBC Sports/ Rotoworld, was not as high on Battle as other pundits were. You can read his report on Battle here.

For a short answer, Norris mentions that Battle has issues waist bending and does not have an strong anchor - which teams like their offensive linemen to have. His size and flashes in the running game are listed as positives.

What is the plan with Battle?

The plan with Battle right now seems simple, since the Rams have already allegedly shared how they feel about Battle this season:

I would rather hear this from Fisher, but it's fine. With the players that the Rams drafted, they can afford to wait until Battle mutures on the field and keep a watchful eye on him.

It will be interesting to see if Battle develops into a starter, but as of right now, Battle will see only see snaps if there is an injury.