The Rams have gone all-in on Sam Bradford, with new coach Jeff Fisher not only declaring publicly that the franchise quarterback he inherited will remain the franchise quarterback, but also pulling off a huge trade to stock the roster with talent around Bradford.
But Bernie Miklasz of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch raises an important point: This trade puts a lot of pressure on Bradford.
If Robert Griffin III turns out to be a better quarterback than Bradford, and if the Redskins are a better team than the Rams over the next few years, then this trade is going to be remembered as a mistake from the Rams’ perspective. What happens if Griffin in 2012 looks like Cam Newton in 2011, while Bradford in 2012 looks like Bradford in 2011? Bradford will be hearing the boos in St. Louis. Or maybe he’ll be hearing the silence of an empty stadium.
The good news for the Rams is that they now have so many high picks that it’s almost impossible to think they won’t upgrade the team around Bradford. They have the sixth overall pick and two high second-round picks this year, then their own first-round pick and the Redskins’ first-round pick each of the next two years. The pieces are there for Fisher to put together a championship team.
The question now is whether Bradford will be the centerpiece on a title contender, or whether Bradford will fall short, and we’ll see in the future that the Rams just traded away the opportunity to add the centerpiece on a title contender.