Rams look to reload in the Draft
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March 2, 2013
With the upcoming NFL draft 54 days away, the St. Louis Rams are looking to bolster their roster and improve upon last year’s 7-8-1 record. All Pro RB Steven Jackson is unlikely to resign, so St. Louis needs to start building around their $50 million dollar man Sam Bradford. The Rams have 8 picks in April’s draft, 2 in the 1st round. They will need to take advantage of every pick in order to keep up with Seattle and San Francisco in the NFC West. St. Louis could use an upgrade at WR, OL, and I also wouldn’t mind them drafting a pass rushing LB/DE.
If the Rams can manage to snatch Percy Harvin from the Minnesota Vikings, then by all means… Despite missing 7 games last year, when healthy Harvin is a matchup nightmare. He is a productive receiver and can provide a big boost to the Rams return game. However, there is a WR I think the Rams should take a flyer on if available…
Tavon Austin/ WR / West Virginia: Austin is not the biggest receiver at 5’8, but he makes it up with his elite speed. He ran a blazing 4.34 at the combine. This past year he hauled in 114 passes for 1,289 yards and 12 touchdowns in 2012-13. Tavon is WR with great footwork, and an superb route-runner. He is has a knack for making defenders miss and thrives in open space. Like Percy Harvin, Austin could make big plays for the Rams’ special teams unit.
Other Players that need to be on the Rams’ radar…
Shamarko Thomas/ S / Syracuse: This past year he racked up 84 tackles (60 solo), and 2 INT. A hard hitting safety that reminds you of a healthy Bob Sanders. Coaches say he’s a workout warrior, and he provided them right in his workouts. He wowed scouts during footwork drills, even besting some of the CBs. Thomas possesses a solid 5’10 frame, as well as top end speed. He ran a unofficial 4.38, had 28 reps on the bench press, and a ridiculous 40.5 inch vertical. The Rams could use an athlete with Thomas’ skill set. Quintin Mikell is due $9 million this upcoming year, which is pretty expensive for an aging safety. Look for St. Louis, to look to add a safety to replace Mikell.
Cornelius Washington/ DE/OLB /Georgia: At 6’4″, 265 pounds, Washington is an intimidating presence at linebacker. He out benched all the LBs at the Combine with 36 reps (Only 2 LINEMAN fared better on the bench press). Not only does he have the size, he has the athletic ability to play inside and outside backer with 4.55 speed and a 39 inch vertical. The Rams could use a run stopper like Washington, who also possess the ability to drop back in coverage.
Terron Armstead/OL/Arkansas-Pine Bluff: Armstead has an unmatched athletic ability for his size. At 6’5, 306 pounds, he ran a blistering 4.71 40 yard dash, crushing the combine record for lineman. His amazing workout at the combine has him shooting up teams’ draft boards. NFL scouts are chomping at the bits, finding ways to utilize Armstead’s abilities. For Arkansas-Pine Bluff’s Pro Day, teams are interested in seeing him do some TE/H-Back drills. The Rams would be wise to draft someone with this kind of talent to protect Sam Bradford.