Not often does one team have the power to shape the first round of the draft, and this year the Rams have the power to do just that. The Rams sit at the number two and number 13 selections and what they do with those picks will determine what other teams decide to do.
To start, the Rams hold the number two pick. Many fans would like the Rams to trade this pick, and if they do, let all havoc break lose. If the Rams trade this pick away, unless Jadeveon Clowney is still available, it will most likely be a team looking for a quarterback, and if that is the case, it could be the first quarterback off the board.
In a draft with not a single franchise quarterback, but a draft that does have a few quarterbacks that are capable of starting, a trade for a signal caller could in turn bring on more trades as teams in need of a quarterback could begin to panic in fear that they lose their guy.
That is the most popular choice for Rams fans and one in which Les Snead favors as well, the only question is if they can get the right price for it as they aren’t just going to give the pick away.
The next option for the Rams would be to take one of the top offensive lineman, Greg Robinson or Jake Matthews, or take the drafts best receiver Sammy Watkins.
If the Rams go offensive line, not a whole lot will change other than the obvious that one of the top offensive lineman are off the board and if you have an offensive line problem, you better trade up to get the other one.
Sammy Watkins being taken could also subsequently lead to a trade for a team to land Mike Evans or even lead to Evans being taken off the board a lot higher than some expect. The Browns at four or Raiders at five could draft Evans if Watkins is selected.
Believe it or not, it may be the Rams 13th overall pick that has the most effect on the draft. Whether or not the Rams go offense, defense, trade up, or trade down, it will have an immediate impact on the draft.
A popular choice here is for the Rams to go wide receiver, cornerback, or safety. After the Rams pick at 13 there are still a lot of teams in need of those three positions. If the Rams do take a wide receiver such as LSU’s Odell Beckham Jr., cornerback Daqueze Dennard, or safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix; it could in turn force some trade action and then force a team that was hoping to get a big playmaker on offense or defense in the first round, later on in the draft.
After Beckham Jr., Clinton-Dix, and Dennard, there isn’t much left in terms of first round value at those positions. If the Rams take either of those players, it will have a large affect on what is done with the teams following.
The 13th pick could gather some trade interest because of this. A team like Dallas or Pittsburgh, who need a safety and cornerback, may want to trade up with the Rams to make sure that they get their guy.
On the flip side if the Rams traded back up inside the top ten to grab defensive tackle Aaron Donald or wide receiver Mike Evans it would leave a team like the Lions or Giants without a wide receiver they were hoping to get, or a defensive tackle they would like to take.
With 12 picks the Rams have a lot of power to do a lot of things in the first round whether it be trade up or trade back. Thankfully in just a few hours we will find out what the Rams actually do.