September 17, 2011; Gainesville FL, USA; Florida Gators safety Matt Elam (22) reacts after Tennessee Volunteers missed a field goal during the first quarter at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE
Oh, the irony of finally breaking the defensive turnover and losing streak drought. The Rams are a stingy defense when it comes to giving up yards, but never could reward themselves with a turnover. Against the Cardinals it was the opposite, giving up a total of 375 yards and a season high four turnovers which included two touchdowns. Although the Rams had a great win against a struggling Cardinals, it was still evident that the Rams have some gaping holes to fill. The Rams are only a few positions away from being a serious contenter to make a deep run in to the playoffs. Their strengths are, running back, cornerback, defensive end/tackle and most importantly quarterback. Say what you want about Sam Bradfrod, but here’s a guy who has stepped into one of the worst teams by record the NFL has seen, he has had four different offensive play books in four years (including college) and has thrown to 33 wide receivers in under three years. 33 wide receivers! With Rams having a reasonably successful year on offense, this will allow Bradford to go into finer detail of the playbook and show the NFL why he was a number one draft pick.
Two players will be analyzed weekly (one from defense and one from offense) based on their current form in college football.
Position needs: OT, OLB, S, WR, TE
Eric Fisher (6 foot 8 , 305 pounds)
Offensive Tackle (Central Michigan)
The Rams offensive line has improved immensely. With centre Scott Wells and left tackle Roger Saffold back, it’s evident that Bradford looks a lot more comfortable in stepping up into the pocket and throwing a lazer down field. Although the Rams look set in four positions of the offensive line, there’s still a evident hole at right tackle. Most football brains will realize that the offensive line is only as good as its weakest link. It only takes one hit to end a quarterbacks season and at one point against the Cardinals, most of Ram fans would’ve got a scare when a Cardinal defensive player came crashing down on Bradford. Jeff Fisher was in a division where he saw David Carr’s career get ruined by the lack of talent up front. He will make sure this doesn’t happen to Bradford.
The main reason why Fisher won’t be a top 10 draft prospect is simply because he doesn’t play for a LSU, USC or an Alabama team. Talent wise, Fisher is right up there as one of the best tackles that will picked in the 2013 draft. Fisher is a well balanced tackle with fantastic coordination and size for a 6 foot 7, 305 pound tackle. Fisher has silky skills which allows him to mirror any defender that is trying to get to the quarterback. San Francisco 49ers All-Pro left tackle Joe Staley, who was selected 28th overall in the 2007 NFL Draft, has enjoyed a stellar pro career ever since. Fisher is expected to be chosen around the same pick as Stanley. If Eric Fisher is anything like Stanley, the Rams should really consider choosing him around the middle of the first round.
Draft range – Mid/late first round
Matt Elam (5 foot 10, 208 pounds)
Safety (University of Florida)
Why are Rams even thinking about drafting a safety? Craig Dahl had the game of his life right? To his credit, he did have a good game, but is he the answer at free safety? Of course not. The one great attribute Craig Dahl has is that he will give you absolutely everything he’s got with every single play. Although he may be limited in the skill area, it’s much better seeing a player who you know will give it his all as opposed to someone who has the talent, but couldn’t care less what happend on the field. Matt Elam has the mentality of a warrior and the talent to go with it.
Elam is an absolute beast. He is a relentless fighter who will get in opposing teams faces. Elam seems to thrive in primetime games by laying massive hits on players that would change the momentum into his team’s favour. Elam really shines in run defense. He reads the play exceptionally well, which allows him to gather the speed to lay a massive hit on the running backs. With the end of the college regular season, Elam was able to finish with 65 tackles, one sack, four interceptions and five pass deflections. Oh yeah, and he isn’t bad at pass defense either. Elam will bring that attitude to an already swag St.Louis Rams defense. The only aspect that will have scouts worried in drafting him early, is his height. If he’s able to show up at the combine, expect his draft stock to sky rocket.
Draft range – late first round/mid second round
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