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Draft Needs: St. Louis Rams

Tampa Bay Buccaneers v St. Louis Rams Getty Images

With the NFL Draft approaching, we’re taking a team-by-team look at the needs of each club. Next up is the St. Louis Rams. The Rams have 12 selections overall and two picks in the first 13 selections of the draft thanks to the Robert Griffin III trade. It should give the Rams ample opportunity to fill some of the glaring holes on the roster.

Safety: The Rams invested a third-round pick on T.J. McDonald last season but could still use more help at the safety position. McDonald missed six games due to a broken leg last year and struggled at times to find his footing during his rookie campaign. Fellow starter Rodney McLeod is back as well but also had issues in coverage at times. The Rams’ defense has continued to improve with one of the most potent pass rush tandems in the game in Chris Long and Robert Quinn. Shoring up the back-end of the defense could make the front four even more imposing as well.

Tackle: It feels like the Rams have been in need of upgrading their offensive line for about a decade. This year is no different. Jake Long is still penciled in as the starter at left tackle but he’s also coming back from ACL and MCL tears. St. Louis re-signed Rodger Saffold but the Rams are expected to move him inside the guard. Joe Barksdale started 13 games last season and remains a potential fit at right tackle at least as a fall back option. However, the Rams could use an upgrade at the position.

In addition, Long’s cap number sky-rockets in 2015 and he could be a cap casualty next offseason. Any tackle selected by St. Louis could fill the hole at right tackle this year before potentially replacing Long on the left side next season.

Outside Linebacker: James Laurinaitis and Alec Ogletree have locked down two of the starting jobs at linebacker, but the Rams could use an upgrade at their other starting position. Jo-Lonn Dunbar and Will Witherspoon struggled at times last season in that role. Dunbar remains on the roster but Witherspoon has not been re-signed and remains a free agent. The remaining group of linebackers have very little experience and depth could use upgrading as well.

Cornerback: At the very least, the Rams need to add depth at cornerback. Janoris Jenkins has shown promise in his first two seasons and Trumaine Johnson has been a solid third cornerback. But with the departure of Cortland Finnegan, the Rams need to add another player that can challenge Johnson for the starting job. With just five cornerbacks currently under contract – and one in trouble off the field – St. Louis could add a couple cornerbacks to the roster in the draft.

Wide Receiver: The Rams aren’t lacking in options at receiver. They’ve invested significantly on receivers in the draft as five receivers have been selected in the first four rounds in the last three years: Tavon Austin (1st round, 2013), Stedman Bailey (3rd round, 2013) Austin Pettis (3rd round, 2011), Brian Quick (2nd round, 2012) and Chris Givens (4th round, 2012). They also signed former Tennessee first round pick Kenny Britt this offseason.

Despite all those additions, they are still lacking a true top flight No. 1 option at receiver. However, if they don’t jump on a receiver early that they believe could be that kind of player – perhaps Clemson’s Sammy Watkins or Texas A&M’s Mike Evans – they made decided to stand pat with their current stable of options.

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10 Responses to “Draft Needs: St. Louis Rams”
  1. thewiseowloftruth says: Apr 21, 2014 3:36 PM

    Sammy Watkins.

  2. 69finfan says: Apr 21, 2014 3:37 PM

    What about Head Coach?

  3. competitivecompetitioncompeter says: Apr 21, 2014 4:16 PM

    It seems to me to be a virtual certainty that the Rams can still get the player they need, Watkins/Evans/Lattimer, further into the 1st round. I see them bail out of Jadaveon “it’s not the pick, it’s the player” Clowney at #2, add picks, and still get the WR they want.

  4. rockymountainoysters says: Apr 21, 2014 4:17 PM

    If clowney is there you don’t pass him up, otherwise Watkins or trade down

  5. skito13 says: Apr 21, 2014 4:39 PM

    This current Rams regime seems to have the knack for drafting. With that said getting more 2-3 round picks for the #2 is worth the trade. They have a lot of receivers on the payroll maybe trade one or two and then pickup a Watkins .

  6. rmfp1978 says: Apr 21, 2014 6:24 PM

    Everyone dogs fisher, I’ve been a rams fan since they moved to st.Louis and he has changed a franchise that has been in dire need of leadership for over a decade. Snead and fisher are way better at running a professional football team than devany and that guy that cleans the locker room for the ravens currently spags. They’ve missed on some picks pead, quick, maybe givens but all and all job well done with what the team was like when they took over. Give them a chance the players compete and are mad when they lose unlike bulger and sj39 laughing when they were losing miserably

  7. computojon says: Apr 21, 2014 6:47 PM

    The Rams had the worst (or possibly second-worst behind Cleveland) roster in the league when Snead and Fisher arrived. I’m surprised at the progress they’ve made in only two years. The Rams are probably middle-of-the-pack now in terms of roster talent. Give them 2 more years, by which time the Rams should be top-10 talent-wise, or else we’ll have to declare draft under-performance, given the number of high draft picks they’ve had under the Snead/Fisher regime.

  8. tae323 says: Apr 21, 2014 11:04 PM

    2 years ago the Rams had one of the worst rosters in football. Everybody like to trash Fisher but he and Snead has turned the team around and have won nearly as many games in two season and the toughest conference in football than the Rams have won in the last 5 season prior, and built one of the toughest defense.

  9. redbirdnation23 says: Apr 22, 2014 10:53 AM

    Sammy Watkins without a doubt at pick #2, but if the Rams end up with a OL at #2 then they can fall and get Mike Evans or Marquise Lee at #13.. Mike Evans is a big man who stands at 6’4 215-220.. Dude will be legit and add height to the WR position for a bigger target.. Heck, they could even trade their #13 pick and another late pick to move up and get Sammy if they see another team interested in the top 13! Rams need Sammy first then fall back and draft a OL if they need it as bad as they say (which I don’t think they really do). They could use more D! Safety or OLB position on defense and they are complete!

  10. ocrams says: Apr 23, 2014 8:11 AM

    We need safety and cornerback positions filled. We took no steps in free agency in that regard so we have to turn to the draft to address those needs. This will mean our secondary can be exploited since 2 players will be rookies. Its a concern.

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