The St. Louis Rams 2013 Draft Preview: Larry Warford And D.J. Swearinger

Jan 2, 2012; Orlando, FL, USA; South Carolina Gamecocks safety D.J. Swearinger (36) watches Nebraska Cornhuskers quarterback Taylor Martinez (3) during the fourth quarter of the 2012 Capital One Bowl at the Citrus Bowl. South Carolina defeated Nebraska 30-13. Mandatory Credit: Douglas Jones-USA TODAY Sports

For the whole 2012 season, fanatical Ram fans would just be as interested in the result of the Washington Redskins game, as the Rams hold their 2013 first round draft pick. When the Skins won their last six games to make a run for the playoffs, it was at first rather frustrating to watch the Rams slip down the draft board. But the more you look at the 2013 NFL draft, the more you would want to be drafting middle of the first round. The top ten will be loaded with big linemen and very slim at the playmaker positions. Yeah, the Rams need to fix the offensive line, but the 2013 draft class is really deep at the o’line position and the Rams will have a great opportunity to go up and snag a great guard or tackle. That’s if Jeff Fisher and Les Snead think it’s a top priority. Draft guru Mike Mayock stated that, “St. Louis is in really good position. I don’t like being in the top 10 this year. I’d much rather be at 16 and 22.” If all the top guard and tackle prospects get chosen before the Rams pick, the Rams could very easily switch their focus to the tight end, safety, wide reicever and outside linebacker positions. All these positions are expected to still be strong in the mid-late first round.

Two players will be analyzed weekly (one from defense and one from offense) based on their current form in college football.
This isn’t a mock draft. This is simply an analysis of high valued players that will enter the 2013 NFL draft, so that readers are more knowledgeable of each high draft prospect come draft time.

OFFENSE
Larry Warford (6 foot 3, 325 pounds)
Guard (Western Kentucky)
Never in Jeff Fisher’s 16 years of coaching experience, has he drafted a offensive linemen in the first round. Given the obvious need at both the guard and the tackle positions, this year could be the year that Les Snead and Fisher take a shot on a offensive linemen. This draft class is deep at the offensive line position. Now, Fisher could have two mind sets going into the draft. Take an already established offensive linemen in a strong class, or in the second or third rounds and take a solid linemen who can be built into a stud.

Chance Warmack is the talk of this year’s offensive linemen class. Coming out of college, you couldn’t ask for a more complete guard. Jonathon Cooper isn’t far behind him either. Both are expected to be gone mid first round. Larry Warford was dominant at the Senior Bowl, not letting anyone past him. This grew his draft stock drastically, as he is now seen as a solid linemen to be taken in the second round. Warford has a complete skill set to be a pro bowl guard. He rarely gets bull rushed, as his power and technique is too hard to beat. Warford uses that power to be dominant in the running game. He has a uncanny knack to open up running lanes. The best part about Warford is his athleticism for the size he carries around.  He handled future round one talent speed-rushers like Richardson and Floyd extremely well.
Draft Range – second round.

DEFENSE
D.J. Swearinger (6 foot, 210 pounds)
Safety (South Carolina)
Every Ram fan knows that they are in dying need of a safety. You don’t even need to be a Rams fan to know that, that’s how bad the situation is. Craig Dahl isn’t the answer and Quintin Mikell will remain on the team if he takes a pay cut, which won’t happen as he has a case to argue that he has one of the best stats as a safety from the 2012 season. So two holes at the safety position that need to be fixed, either from free agency or the draft.

D.J. Swearinger hits hard. Period. This guy plays with attitude, plays with grunt and a little swag. All of which are attributes that the combine can’t detect. If you haven’t heard of this guy yet, do yourself a favour and look him up on youtube and sit back and enjoy the next 20 minutes of your life. He has been compared to hard hitting safety Dashon Goldson, which never is a bad thing.
One of his biggest attributes is his versatility. Swearinger stepped up to play cornerback, free safety and strong safety last season for the Gamecocks. He’s a massive hitter, destroys receivers over the middle and makes solid tackles on running backs. He plays downhill and will make his presence felt on any team he goes on. Last season he collected 80 tackles, 2 int (one pick six) and 7 pass deflections.
Draft Range – second/third round. 

Follow @davebarber92 for more updates

Follow the links to previous Ramblin Fan Draft Previews:
Week 1      Week 4     Week 7    Week 10   Week 13   Week 16   Week 19
Week 2      Week 5     Week 8    Week 11   Week 14   Week 17
Week 3      Week 6     Week 9    Week 12   Week 15   Week 18 

Topics: NFL Draft, St. Louis Rams

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