Philadelphia Eagles News

The Rams Are On The Clock


A year ago, the St. Louis Rams were in the same position that the Carolina Panthers are in now.

The Rams held the No. 1 pick in the draft and with it they selected quarterback Sam Bradford. The move paid off immediately as the Rams went from 1-15 to a very respectable 7-9 in just one season. In fact, the Rams played the Seattle Seahawks in the final game of the regular season for the NFC West title and came up just short.

Bradford started every game and completed 60 percent of his passes for 3,512 yards with 18 touchdowns against 15 interceptions. The Rams also provided him great protection for his blindside with second-round pick Rodger Saffold, who stepped in and started every game at left tackle and made teams that passed on him at the end of the first round regret the decision. Along with right tackle Jason Smith, the team's top pick in 2009, the tackle position is set in St. Louis for years to come. The interior of the line, primarily at guard, could use an upgrade in talent.

For all of the success Bradford had, it came without a star at wide receiver. Two former Eagles - Danny Amendola and Brandon Gibson - provided the bulk of the receptions, but a playmaker is certainly needed especially with new offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels looking to install a more vertical attack scheme this season. The fact that neither A.J. Green nor Julio Jones is available here would be a disappointment to the Rams. The Rams do have Steven Jackson, the Pro Bowl running back, but are in dire need of a change-of-pace back to complement him. Jackson has had six straight 1,000-yard campaigns.

With a franchise quarterback and a new offensive coordinator, head coach and defensive mastermind Steve Spagnuolo can focus on improving a defense that statically was ranked in the middle of the league throughout each category except in sacks. The pass rush with James Hall and Chris Long allowed St. Louis to finish seventh in the league with 43 sacks, the hallmark of Spagnuolo's scheme. The defensive tackle position was manned by a number of veterans like Fred Robbins last season, but a stout run-stuffer could be added to the mix. The other turnstile position was weakside linebacker, but quite honestly there isn't one here in the first round worthwhile with UCLA's Akeem Ayers more suited for the strong side.

If the Rams use the No. 14 pick on offense, and one of the premier wide receivers is not available, then running back Mark Ingram could be an option as an alternate to Jackson. The top two offensive tackles are still on the board, and value-wise could be the best pick here, but would one be drafted and then moved inside?

On defense, the Rams can continue to bolster the pass rush with Aldon Smith of Missouri or Purdue's Ryan Kerrigan. Illinois defensive tackle Corey Liuget would be the best defensive tackle at this spot.

What will the Rams do with the No. 14 overall pick? The choice is yours.

Needs: WR, G, OLB, DT
All Good: QB, OT, TE

Previous Picks

No. 1 - Carolina: QB Cam Newton, Auburn
No. 2 - Denver: DT Marcell Dareus, Alabama
No. 3 - Buffalo: LB Von Miller, Texas A&M
No. 4 - Cincinnati: QB Blaine Gabbert, Missouri
No. 5 - Arizona: WR A.J. Green, Georgia
No. 6 - Cleveland: WR Julio Jones, Alabama
No. 7 - San Francisco: DE Da'Quan Bowers, Clemson
No. 8 - Tennessee: DT Nick Fairley, Auburn
No. 9 - Dallas: DE Cameron Jordan, California
No. 10 - Washington: QB Jake Locker, Washington
No. 11 - Houston: CB Patrick Peterson, LSU
No. 12 - Minnesota: DE Robert Quinn, North Carolina
No. 13 - Detroit: CB Prince Amukamara, Nebraska

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