Los Angeles Rams General Manager Les Snead went on the Herd on Fox Sports 1 yesterday to talk about the Rams’ upcoming season and his view of things around the league as GM.
Host Colin Cowherd led off with a question about Seattle Seahawks QB Russell Wilson and Dallas Cowboys QB Dak Prescott, alluding to the recent hits on mid-round QBs as opposed to the safety of taking more highly touted prospects like starting Rams QB Jared Goff whom the Rams took with the #1 overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft.
Cowherd then pivoted to WR Cooper Kupp and the jump from the Football Championship Subdivision to the NFL. Snead talked about his affinity for the Day 2 rounds for players that learn how to apply the skills they do have as they may not be as physically gifted as top first round players who can suffer from “the curse of the top 10” as Snead put it.
On to Malcolm Gladwell, provider of fodder for lazy minds and lazy dialetics. Speaking of...Colin Cowherd, everybody:
[Gladwell] says that second and third round picks 100 years from now or sooner, we’ll look back and go, “They were more valuable considering the cost of first-round picks which bust almost as much and cost you two to three times more.
Yes, because nobody was saying that seven years ago when Sam Bradford was signing a $78m rookie deal in 2010...
Cowherd (thankfully) moves on to Jared Goff, who Cowherd thinks would be “Matt Ryan at the best” (I don’t even know what this means, and I doubt Cowherd does). Snead offers some interesting perspective:
Right now, he’s still 22-years old. Let’s take Dak and Carson [Wentz]. They’re 24-years old. Right now of the 32 teams of guys listed #1 at QB, he’s the only 22-year old listed as a starting QB. So, we drafted him for the long-term.
And what I do like about Jared, last year bothered him but it didn’t affect him. And by that I mean, he didn’t go in a hole. He didn’t lose confidence.
When we did interview [new Head Coach] Sean McVay and he was in a hotel not far from here, and...we had always said we’d interview our first round of coaches, and we then might let them meet some players like a Jared Goff, like an Aaron Donald [in the] second round. But as we got to know Sean in that first interview, [we] knew, “Ok, wait a minute. This guy is definitely getting a second interview.” So, picked up the phone. Called Jared. “Hey, are you in town? Where you at? Are you close?” He was definitely close. Came right down. Sean and him had a good conversation.
I tell that story in that since that last game? Again, hadn’t taken many vacations. Hadn’t gotten better at golf. Tried his best to get better at football.
And I think we’ve seen that with the new offensive system through OTAs and now we got to go through training camp and obviously the games will speak for themselves.
More gobbledygook from Cowherd led Snead to talk about basic traits (intelligence, instincts) which he then leads into new Defensive Coordinator Wade Phillips’ 3-4 system and the idea of setting up a system first and then getting players to fit that.
It wasn’t the most illuminating interview, but it’s a national sports radio host carving out four or five questions for the Rams’ General Manager. He’s got to try to mine something for an audience 99.9% of whom don’t care about the Rams.
In the end, the only important takeaway is whatever you sincerely believe from Snead’s comments on Goff, such as his insistence that the Rams drafted Goff for the “long-term.” How long is that? Should Goff come anywhere near his level of 2016 play which was absolutely abysmal while the Rams struggle to get above .500 this year, how long is that? How long should we point to Goff’s age as the league continues to import young talent like Houston Texans QB DeShaun Watson who is a full year younger than Goff? And ultimately, how much stock should fans put into the comments of an embattled GM who head into his sixth year in the position without a single winning record to point to to justify his professional record?
Perhaps that’s where the 2016 season, and those prior, have affected the fans and Snead more than they might have affected the Rams’ young QB, for better or for worse.