The first round of the 2019 NFL Draft is in the books.
We’re gonna be busy tonight.
#45.) Texas A&M Aggies C Erik McCoy
The Rams got their offensive line transition underway a year ago in the 2018 NFL Draft with the selection of guard Joseph Noteboom and center Brian Allen with the 89th and 111th picks, respectively. Now that starting left guard Rodger Saffold III and starting center John Sullivan have left town, the transition can begin in earnest. But with left tackle Andrew Whitworth around for one last ride and right guard Austin Blythe set to prove his 2018 season was no fluke, there’s not much long-term stability on the line.
McCoy’s a fine interior line prospect. While he was a three-year starter at center, he does have experience at right guard. That kind of versatility has been known to be valuable to Rams run game coordinator and offensive line coach Aaron Kromer. So which position would McCoy compete for? Don’t know, but it probably doesn’t matter. The Rams’ staff can sort it out in training camp and through the preseason as they look to build their line of the future…
More than just the pick itself though, it’s a decent demonstration of why a trade down always made the most sense as long as the Rams could get the kind of compensation they ultimately did.
Here, you get a player like McCoy you could have justified earlier while also adding a top-80 pick. Consider that in an early April mock, Kadar had us taking Temple Owls QB Rock Ya-Sin; I thought that was a perfect example of why the Rams were in good position to trade back even that late in the draft preparation process. Ya-Sin didn’t go in last night’s first round, so it’s not as if the Rams are going to miss out on quality talent in this range.
In Kadar’s mock, he has LSU Tigers CB Greedy Williams at #33, Ya-Sin at #36, Florida Gators OT Jawaan Taylor at #37, Oklahoma Sooners OT Cody Ford at #38, Alabama Crimson Tide LB Mack Wilson at #42, and Kansas State Wildcats OT Dalton Risner at #44. It won’t take much for any of those prospects to slide back to where the Rams are at #45. And should they feel so compelled for any of them, they could easily spend some late Day 3 capital to jump back up. And that’s without noting all the other prospects who go in Kadar’s second round that could be consideration for the Rams!
In the end, the Rams are sitting in good position heading into tonight’s proceedings with a chance to stack up some quality players as they begin to build out their 2019 draft class.