The Los Angeles Rams selected defensive lineman Greg Gaines in the fourth round of the 2019 NFL Draft. Here is the analysis of how he fits with the team.
The Los Angeles Rams came into Saturday with no fourth-round picks, but of course, we know that does not limit Les Snead after the team would eventually get in on the action.
Los Angeles made a trade with the New England Patriots (the third time this week they have swapped picks with the Super Bowl champions), this time giving up picks No. 162 and No.167 for No. 134 and No. 243 to move into the fourth round to draft Washington’s Greg Gaines.
Coincidentally, the star defensive tackle happens to be from Los Angeles, meaning the Rams will allow another homecoming for one of their new players.
When you read descriptions of the way Gaines plays football, he is described as (stop me if this sounds familiar) a “heady” player with outstanding effort, and is undersized.
These are the words that tend to be used for Rams draft picks. Sean McVay values smart players who work hard, and he is willing to sacrifice a bit on size and measurables.
Los Angeles lost Ndamukong Suh this offseason since it would be too expensive to bring the veteran back, and was clearly out of the team’s price range.
The team was not active in free agency to address the middle of the defensive line, but with Aaron Donald in the Rams interior of the defense, adding a young run stuffer like Gaines will pair nicely.
Without question, Gaines will add some nice depth and a rotational option to play inside.
Gaines is known for playing low and getting good leverage, though his weaknesses are that he lacks explosiveness and is a limited pass rusher. His major strength comes in the middle to stop the run.
Despite his size and strength, he is a decent athlete and actually played some running back in high school. In some ways he reminds me of a poor man’s Donald, a strong, undersized defender, but low to the ground.
However, Gaines lacks the insanely quick first step of Donald, but this was still worth the selection for the Rams.
Gaines looks to add some rotational snaps to the defensive line as he develops, and is also the second player the Rams have drafted from Washington, as safety Taylor Rapp was from Washington as well.
Three of the five picks the Rams have used so far have been from western schools (Washington and Oklahoma), although cornerback David Long is from Los Angeles.
The Rams are next on the clock at No. 169 in the fifth round. But of course, you never know when they might move again since this has been a popular trend by the Rams all weekend.