Day one of the 2009 NFL Draft saw the St. Louis Rams play it safe, and have a nice day. What became abundantly apparent in 2008 was that Billy Devaney and the St. Louis Rams are all about character. The selection of Chris Long and Donnie Avery made that crystal clear.
Heading into Saturday the Rams had several players they liked at #2, and there was a possibility that they could trade down. No trades were made and the Rams selected Jason Smith, OT Baylor. Jason Smith is a 6’5″, 310 pound monster tackle that the Rams can plug right into the lineup. With the offseason pick up of Jason Brown, the offensive line should be ready to role in 2009. Steven Jackson should have a big smile on his face today. As Day1 went on some surprises were taken and it started to look like one of the top rated linebackers may come our way. When both the Detroit Lions and New England Patriots passed on the top rated inside linebackers Rey Maualuga and James Laurinaitis it was the Rams turn. The Rams selected James Laurinaitis from Ohio State. This fills a huge hole the Rams have had since losing London Fletcher. The selection of Laurinaitis allows the Rams to move Will Witherspoon back to the outside.
I was very pleased with the Rams two selections on Day 1 of the 2009 NFL Draft. Jason Smith was rated as the top offensive tackle on most boards, and James Laurinaitis was rated as the top inside linebacker on a lot of boards. These were the two biggest needs for the Rams, and they filled both on day one. I look for the Rams to pick up secondary help, a backup running back and possibly a WR on Day 2.