St. Louis Rams 2014 NFL Draft Wrap-up

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Jan 6, 2014; Pasadena, CA, USA; Auburn Tigers running back Tre Mason (21) scores a touchdown against the Florida State Seminoles during the second half of the 2014 BCS National Championship game at the Rose Bowl. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Offensive Additions

OT Greg Robinson, Auburn University:
As predicted, OT Greg Robinson out of Auburn University was selected #2 overall. Many may question his experience seeing as that he is only a sophomore, however his physical prowess and technical blocking abilities more than make up for it. At the combine Robinson was able to run a 4.94 40-yard dash, jump 28.5″, and do 32 225-pound bench presses. Robinson is strong, but he is also very quick with his hand placement and his footwork. His long arms and strong legs give him the ability to send just about any defender back into the middle of next week with relative ease. In terms of potential selections the Rams could have selected, the Rams selected the best that was available.  Many question whether or not they could have selected WR Sammy Watkins as the #2 overall pick. To those who think that the Rams need a WR, you are most definitely right. Last season the Rams passing game needed some help at the receiving position considering that TE Jared Cook was the Rams’ leading receiver. However, with the addition of former Titans’ receiver Kenny Britt, the Rams have decent deep threat who can help Sam Bradford deep down the field. With Robinson, the Rams running game and play action play calling should see exponential growth next season with Zac Stacy and Benny Cunningham. I think that with WR Tavon Austin (former first round selection) the Rams have some untapped speed and potential. With some screen and home run plays, the Rams former 8th overall pick Austin can see some success far into the season. But all in all, the Rams need to protect their QB, before they can even start to think about scoring touchdown the Rams need to score some pancake blocks first.

RB Tre Mason, Auburn University:
As the Rams probable number three running back next to Benny Cunningham, Mason should be able to see some time this season. The problem I have with this pick is not in the player. In fact I think Tre Mason is a wonderful back and probably should have been selected a little bit earlier. He has the speed and size of a normal NFL RB to go along with national championship level experience. However, in the Rams’ circumstance, the need for another RB is just not there. The Rams’ Zac Stacy performed wonderfully last season given that he was only a rookie, bursting onto the scene with 973 yards and 7 rushing touchdowns to go with Cunningham’s 5.6 yards per carry average on 47 carries. With Mason in the mix with Stacy, Cunningham and Richardson, the Rams are going to have to make some unnecessary come training camp time. Personally I would like the Rams to have selected perhaps an unknown WR at this position, to help give Bradford some depth at the WR position, instead. I think that keeping Mason in the Auburn family with OT Greg Robinson was a good decision, however I believe that the need for a running back does not exceed the want in this case.

QB  Garrett Gilbert, Southern Methodist University:
Despite being injured for the majority of the season, Sam Bradford was able to pass for more yards than the 11-game starter Kellen Clemens. As a Texas Longhorn, Gilbert performed less than admirably and thus transferred to SMU where, by his senior season, he started to play at an elite level. As a Mustang, Gilbert threw for 3,528 yards with a 66.5 completion percentage and 21 touchdowns. For the Rams, the pickup of Gilbert was a very smart one. In the unfortunate case that Sam Bradford gets injured once again, they will have an adequate QB to go in and take his place until Bradford gets healthy. Hopefully Bradford will not be out for the entire season and will be the primary leader of this Rams’ offense.

OT Mitchell Van Dyk, Portland State University:
By selecting OT Greg Robinson as their first selection in the draft, the Rams made it clear to the NFL that their goal was to reorganize their offense, especially their offensive line. With Van Dyk the Rams get a solid offensive lineman who they can then go and use during the season to give some of their starters a needed rest.

C Demetrius Rhaney, Tennessee State University:
This is primarily to give the Rams some needed depth at the Center position. In reality there is not really anybody else that the Rams could have drafted (except Jackson Jeffcoat who should not have gone undrafted). Rhaney allows the Rams to have some extra lineman in the case there is injury to the Rams’ current center Scott Wells.

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