Most definitely some action can be expected from the St. Louis Rams throughout the 2014 NFL mock draft process. Here is what they could do.
Round 1 (from WAS) – Jadeveon Clowney – DE – South Carolina
St. Louis doesn’t need a defensive end. That is the argument everyone will make looking ahead to this pick. It’s fair to point out the Green Bay Packers didn’t need a quarterback when they took Aaron Rodgers in 2005 either. Jadeveon Clowney is one of those transcending talents that is just too good to pass up. Putting him in a rotation with Robert Quinn and Chris Long could alter the landscape of the NFC West.
Round 1 – Zack Martin – OT – Notre Dame
Athleticism goes a long way in the pros but so does intelligence. Zack Martin is not the most gifted offensive tackle but he is a technician with good enough balance, solid footwork and plenty of power. He does everything right, is never caught out of position and always seems to get his guy blocked. Those kinds of players are underappreciated, but the Rams should and will take notice given their needs up front.
Round 2 – Deone Bucannon – SS – Washington
Safety is one of the true need areas for the Rams. It’s not that the position is terrible but they do lack a true playmaker at that position who can take advantage of the pass rush. Deone Bucannon is a big, physical player out of Washington who loves to set the tone with his fierce hits. Don’t be fooled though, he’s also quite adept at taking the ball away.
Round 3 – Victor Hampton – CB – South Carolina
Jeff Fisher loves defensive backs who often have the tag “pesky” attached to their names. That often means they are physical, tough and don’t shy away from contact. Corteland Finnegan and Janoris Jenkins are perfect examples. The team can use more depth in that area. Victor Hampton is not the biggest but he boast very good athleticism and a mentality that he will throw his body around to stop the offense, by ground or air.
Round 4 – Andre Williams – RB – Boston College
He’s not a pass catcher or known for his blitz pickups but if a team is looking for a true running back in the old school sense, Andre Williams is that guy. The NCAA leading rusher for 2013 has that thickly built body backs need. He shows good patience and vision to find the hole and plenty of power to take and hit and keep gaining yards. On top of that he has great buildup speed. Durability is a question mark though, which is why he falls to the 4th round.
Round 5 – Brandon Coleman – WR – Rutgers
Tavon Austin provided the speed angle for the St. Louis Rams receiving corps in 2013. Now they need another element for Sam Bradford: size. Getting a big, physical target who can go get jump balls or battle defensive backs for tough catches would be ideal. Brandon Coleman is not a finished product out of Rutgers but at 6’6″, 220 lbs he is impossible to miss on a football field. While not overly fast or agile, he is quite intelligent and knows exactly what he can do.
Round 6 – Ryan Carrethers – DT – Arkansas State
Though they showed improvement in the second half of the season, the Rams can’t leave this 2014 NFL mock draft without bolstering their run defense. That means getting some size and strength up front. Ryan Carrethers out of ArkansasState is quite a load at 330 lbs. He’s not going to provide much help at collapsing the pocket but with enough quickness and strength he can plug holes to prevent teams from running whenever they please.
Round 7 – Andrew Jackson – ILB – Western Kentucky
Keeping with the physical mentality, St. Louis doesn’t need immediate help at linebacker but there is nothing wrong with adding depth at such a physical position. Andrew Jackson isn’t the most athletic kid out of Western Kentucky but he is a classic thumper, able to make sound tackles and deliver hard shots to ball carriers who come within his vicinity. He’s not worth much in coverage, but he still has value.