The Los Angeles Rams missed out on JuJu Smith-Schuster after the former USC wide receiver was selected by the Pittsburgh Steelers late in the second round.
For months, the Los Angeles Rams were expected to consider using their first pick in the second round of the 2017 NFL Draft on a wide receiver, and the one player that was arguably linked to the team the most was JuJu Smith-Schuster out of USC. When looking at all of the struggles surrounding the offense in 2016, it was no secret how desperate the Rams were entering the offseason to add another playmaker to the passing game.
With the 44th overall pick following a decision to trade down with the Buffalo Bills, Los Angeles decided to give head coach Sean McVay another pass-catching tight end to work with in Gerald Everett, leaving any chance of acquiring Smith-Schuster taking place in the third round. Unfortunately for the Rams, the risk failed to payoff after the Pittsburgh Steelers decided to use the 62nd pick on the former Trojans star.
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From the perspective of the Steelers, this move gives Ben Roethlisberger another reliable option to work with in the passing game after Smith-Schuster found the end zone 20 times during his final two seasons at USC. Not to mention, Smith-Schuster has the benefit of seeing more passes thrown his way from Big Ben with opposing defenses focusing most of their attention on the whereabouts of Antonio Brown and Le’Veon Bell.
As for Los Angeles, this is another move they may look back on and wonder what could have been since Smith-Schuster was there to select at No. 44. Obviously, the potential is there for Everett to shine in McVay’s offense as a rookie, but to see the Rams pass on two wide receivers in the first round in Smith-Schuster and Zay Jones (Bills used No. 44 pick to select) is a little frustrating for a team that currently has Tavon Austin and Robert Woods as their top two options at the moment.