1. First Round, 16th overall: Kenny Vaccaro, S, Texas
Vaccaro is pretty much considered a consensus top prospect at the safety position, and this is great value for the Rams considering last year’s top safety (Mark Barron) was selected with the fifth overall pick. Vaccaro is a versatile player who can come up in the box and make plays behind the line of scrimmage, cover slot receivers, or play centerfield. The great news for the Rams is, he excels in each area. He didn’t play deep as much as a senior, but he showed over the last two seasons that he’s a well-rounded defender with solid overall athletic ability who can upgrade a team’s defense instantly. The Rams’ defensive rebuild will look even better with the addition of the playmaking safety out of Texas, a school that has produced some of the NFL’s top safeties in recent years.
2. First Round, 22nd overall: Alec Ogletree, LB, Georgia
The Rams have James Laurinaitis at the inside linebacker position, but it gets pretty sketchy outside of him on their depth chart. Ogletree was arrested for a DUI before the Scouting Combine, but that won’t prevent him from being selected in the top 32 picks in my opinion. He is a pure playmaker at the linebacker position who can go sideline to sideline better than pretty much any other player at that position in this year’s draft. This would be a huge addition to a defense that is lacking playmakers at LB and S. If the Rams can add both Vaccaro and Ogletree to their already young and talented defense, they could be on their way to contending with Seattle and San Francisco for the division title.
3. Second Round, 46th overall: Montee Ball, RB, Wisconsin
With Steven Jackson pursuing other opportunities with the Atlanta Falcons, it makes sense that the Rams will be on the lookout for a replacement bell-cow tailback. I think there will be much more of a rotation this season for St.Louis, but a guy who makes a lot of sense for them is Montee Ball. Ball showed an impressive ability to get the ball into the end zone as a member of the Wisconsin Badgers, and I think his style of play will translate well to Jeff Fisher’s offense. The Rams can use him in a tandem with Isaiah Pead and Daryl Richardson, last year’s draft picks at the position.
4. Third Round, 78th overall: Shawn Williams, S, Georgia
I don’t think the Rams will stop at adding just one safety in this year’s draft. Their current group is made up of a bunch of former undrafted free agents. Not to say guys can’t come up and produce, but the Rams certainly will need to add talent to the safety position. Shawn Williams is one of my favorite overall prospects in this draft, and I think he’ll be a great find for some team in the third round. He was a great leader at Georgia, and showed up at the Scouting Combine and proved to everyone that he’t not only a great college player, he can hang with the guys in the NFL as well.
5. Fourth Round, 113th overall: Bennie Logan, DT, LSU
Logan would be a very solid addition to the Rams’ defensive front. They already have three first round picks in Robert Quinn, Chris Long, and Michael Brockers, and I think Logan could really flourish alongside of those other young players. He’s not a flashy prospect, but on the interior, he can be tough to handle and would provide the Rams an additional body up front that could provide a push inside to get after those quick NFC West quarterbacks.