Another week, another day of speculation about the St. Louis Rams and their unfairly high pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, courtesy of the down-spiraling Washington Redskins. NFL.com’s Gil Brandt release a tiered grouping of the quarterback prospects this morning, listing only three signal callers that have an “above-average” chance of being drafted in the Top 10: Teddy Bridgewater, Johnny Manziel, and Derek Carr. He follows that with another tiered listing of 13 NFL teams that may be in the running for a quarterback in the upcoming draft.
As of right now, Brandt has seven franchises in the “Must-Have” category, teams that are in dire need of a quarterback if they plan on turning their fortunes around next season. The “math” in this situation is exactly what the St. Louis Rams are hoping for on draft day: three Top 10 quarterbacks being hunted by seven teams; basic supply and demand.
Last week, we talked about three “likely” trade partners for the St. Louis Rams in April, including the Jacksonville Jaguars, Cleveland Browns, and Minnesota Vikings. However, with the understanding that more teams may now be in the mix for their next “franchise” quarterback, it might not be a bad idea to take a look…
Houston Texans (drafting No.1 overall)
Oakland Raiders (No.5)
Tennessee Titans (No.11)
New York Jets (No.14)
Obviously, the Houston Texans do not need to trade with anyone if they are in genuine need of a quarterback, holding the top pick in the draft (i.e. the rights to Teddy Bridgewater). Between Derek Carr and Johnny Manziel, the Fresno State phenom is undoubtedly the more highly regarded prospect, but could he draw enough attention from any of these other squads to force them to move up?
You can pretty much count the New York Jets out of the equation as well, unless they “lose their way” into the Top 10. Moving from No.14 to No.2 overall is a quantum leap, and they likely do not have the will or the resources (i.e. future picks) to form a viable trade offer.
With news that the Titans have chosen to not pick up the additional-year option on Jake Locker’s contract, the writing may be on the wall for the opt-injured quarterback in Tennessee. Reports are also circulating that the Titans may be holding their breathe in hopes that Jay Cutler will test free agency at the end of the season, giving them a shot at the lone “prized” quarterback of the offseason. Moving from outside the Top 10 to No.2 overall is still a massive leap, but if the Titans feel that their window for potential takeover in the pathetic AFC South has finally arrived, they could shell out the picks to snag one of the top two signal callers in the 2014 draft class.
Lastly, the Oakland Raiders. Sitting at No.5, with a long history of making “franchise changing” moves in the Draft, the other California team could certainly put together an enticing package for the St. Louis Rams. On top of the mere draft picks that the Rams could receive, there is no doubt that Les Snead and Jeff Fisher would love the idea of a “double trade down” out of the Top 10. In a dream scenario, the Rams could essentially trade the right to Derek Carr, then trade the right to Johnny Manziel, likely taking home a king’s ransom of high picks in both the 2014 draft and future drafts.
Draft day is one of the most unpredictable events on the NFL calendar, especially following the implementation of the new rookie wage. However, with seven teams potentially fighting over three players, this year could be shaping up to be the craziest of them all in the Top 10!
Tags: St. Louis Rams