After two strong offseason's the Rams are in position to make this a third straight and really upgrade their team on both sides of the ball. Here is my pre-combine 7 round Mock Draft for the St. Louis Rams.
Biggest draft needs for St. Louis Rams
- Offensive Line
- Wide Receiver
- Defensive Back
Sammy Watkins - WR, Clemson
The 2014 NFL draft class is one where WR and OT talent reign supreme and this is a great thing for the St. Louis Rams. Do they trade the number 2 pick or will they retain it and make a selection? I have the Rams keeping the pick and drafting dynamic Clemson receiver Sammy Watkins. Some say he's been pro ready since he stepped on the field as a freshman, others feel his off the field issues may be a problem. One things for sure though, this guy can PLAY ! Pair him with Tavon Austin and the Rams will have one of this most dynamic receiving tandems in the league. This will be a make or break year for Sam Bradford and I know he would love to have Watkins there to help his progression.
Taylor Lewan - OT, Michigan
As much as I hate to see it done, I'm sure the Rams will continue to fill needs and draft an OT with their second first round pick. Why don't I want to see this pick you ask, well here's why : for those Rams fans out there who have followed the Rams draft process over the years know the names Alex Barron and Jason Smith. Those two were both highly graded OT who were picked with high picks (Barron 19th overall, Smith 2nd overall) BUT never amounted to the hype surrounding them. Lewan is a fierce competitor with the size, athleticism and length to excel as an NFL tackle. Being drafted here by the Rams would also be ideal for Lewan due to the precise of former Michigan All-American and NFL Pro Bowler Jake Long. With Long as his mentor and teacher Lewan could develop into an All-Pro tackle as well.
Deone Bucannon - SS, Wash St
After filling two team needs in the first round the Rams will look to fill another. The development of the Rams younger defense is coming along as planned but they still need that one player or two to make them elite. After adding safety TJ McDonald last yr in the draft don't be surprised if they give him a high quality running mate to complement his play. That's where Deone Bucannon comes in. The senior SS from Washington State was one of few bright spots on the Cougars defense this past season. At 6'1" 216lbs Bucannon has the body to play safety in the NFL. He is a bone crushing hitter but can also make a play on the ball when it's in the air (6 ints in 2013). Bucannon would be a day 1 starter and an immediate upgrade to the Rams secondary.
Dominique Easley - DT, Florida
Robert Quinn and Chris Long pair up to make one of the fiercest pass rushing duo's in the league and young DT Michael Brockers is also becoming a force as well. Why not add another young, athletic pass rusher to the fold because you can never have too many. This is a pass first league and the best way to stop the pass is to pressure the QB, just ask Peyton Manning & the Denver Broncos. In a perfect world Dominique Easley would still be available for the Rams in the third round. His first step and explosiveness may be the best out of all the DT's in the class and he uses his hands well when shedding blocks. Though Easley has first round talent written all over him, it is over shadowed by his past of season-ending injuries (ACL tears). If teams decide to overlook his medical history and judge off talent alone Easley won't last past the middle of round two. On the other hand those medical red flags may place him right into the Rams laps.
Tahj Boyd - QB, Clemson
As I said before this is a make or break year for Sam Bradford. Team management as well as Jeff Fisher have stated that Bradford will be the Rams QB next season. With all that being said still don't be surprised if they decide to spend a Day 3 pick on his replacement if he doesn't execute like they feel he can. That's when Tahj Boyd comes into play. He is a winner and a natural born leader who can show those characteristics on the field and in the locker room. Though he does seem to need some work on his accuracy and consistency, Boyd could be that draft & stash type player who would need a yr to develop before he's thrown into the starting spot. It would also be nice to see Boyd and Watkins hook up on Sundays as they did on Saturday's down in Death Valley.
Devan Kennard - OLB, USC
A blue chip prospect out of high school Kennard never really panned out into the college superstar everyone thought he would be. Maybe it was the injures or maybe it was the fact that USC pulls in top recruits year after year and the snaps are handed out amongst multiple players. Whatever the case may be Kennard still has the talent to be an effective player in the NFL.
Cameron Fleming - OT, Stanford
Since offensive line is a dire need for the Rams and has been for a few years now I see them adding another piece to it. In comes Cameron Fleming, a Stanford guy with a high football IQ and the love of power run blocking. Some say he isn't athletic enough to go against NFL speed rushers on an every down basis so he may have to move inside to one of the guard positions.
Isaiah Crowell - RB, Alabama St
Anyone remember that freshman RB at Georgia before Todd Gurley and Keith Marshall? That back was SEC freshman of the year Isaiah Crowell. After a stellar freshman year Crowell was arrested during the offseason and later kicked off the team. He is an explosive back who has excellent agility and can make cuts on a dime. Yeah, the Rams may have found a keeper in Zac Stacy but adding a dynamic back like Crowell to spell him would make the Rams offense that more dangerous. If teams are willing to overlook his off the field issues and give him a shot, they may have the steal of the draft.