In a draft year that feels much less predictable than past editions, and in another case of the LA Rams not having a first round pick, it becomes that much harder to know who to even put on a “wish list.” But we can try.
The Rams pick for the first time at 57 — same as when Van Jefferson was selected in 2020 — and whether they move up or down, whoever that first choice is will be scrutinized more than any other. Even though a team’s first pick is not always its most important, including at the time it is made (a GM could easily be more excited about a later pick than his first one), we as fans tend to pin the whole class on him.
“If Joseph Noteboom struggles, this whole class struggles.”
At least Noteboom’s looking pretty good, but definitely more so when you consider him as a third round pick instead of LA’s first choice in 2018.
We know that the Rams have a need at center and that they didn’t quite replace the losses of John Johnson and Troy Hill with even one defensive back yet. The same could be said about the defensive line as it pertains to Michael Brockers and Morgan Fox. But LA could also address getting faster at linebacker and receiver, or preparing to strengthen the depth and future at left tackle, a key to protecting Matthew Stafford for the next five years.
There are no easy answers in general, but you have every right to believe that there is a prospect with a second round grade who could really change the short term and long term outcomes for the Rams. Who might that be?
Some centers that get mentioned a lot are Landon Dickerson, Creed Humphrey, Josh Meyers, and Quinn Meinerz. If you want players who might be able to play tackle or guard, then Jalen Mayfield, Wyatt Davis, Sam Cosmi, Alex Leatherwood, or Liam Eichenberg might fit.
Defensive backs like Asante Samuel, Jr., Aaron Robinson, Elijah Molden, Richie Grant, or Ifeatu Melifonwu might have fits in LA’s defense and be available at 57.
If you want to be greedy and take a receiver to protect against an injury or two next season, Dyami Brown, Tylan Wallace, Amari Rodgers, D’Wayne Eskeridge, or Terrace Marshall, who’d also be able to replicate some of the size at the position that Josh Reynolds took with him to Tennessee, are potential options.
And linebackers such as Baron Browning, Dylan Moses, Jabril Cox, and Chazz Surratt could be connected to the Rams as well and some of them could be more probable to contribute in 2021 than any of the other positions. Centers often take time to acclimate to the league, as do corners. There isn’t an immediate need at tackle or receiver. Defensive linemen like Ronnie Perkins, Greg Rosseau, Joe Tryon could have opportunities in LA, but are they ready for LA?
And then again, maybe you don’t care about need at all, you just love somebody. A running back like Michael Carter. A quarterback like Kyle Trask. A true “BPA” approach. Perhaps there are no wrong answers, but who would be your answer if you were Les Snead or Sean McVay?