LA Rams draft Nagy’s choices Creed and Cooper in latest mock

Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports /
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LA Rams News Rams Draft
Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports /

Plan A

The LA Rams have needs, but the draft board can fall in several directions. The Rams need an outside linebacker, inside linebacker, and offensive tackle. But how will the draft board fall for the Rams? If you run online simulators, the paths vary tremendously after the second round. So why fight it?

We just ran the simulator multiple times (because we do the heavy lifting) and made note of which talented player showed up most often. In the first run, we grab LB-OT-Edge and in the second run, we grab OT-Edge-LB. In both paths, we end up with the same positions addressed. You can decide which version you prefer.

With the 88th pick of the 2021 NFL Draft, the Los Angeles Rams select linebacker Cameron McGrone from the University of Michigan.

The 6-foot-1, 232-pounder has played the Mike, a.k.a. middle linebacker position,  in college and in a blitz-heavy defensive scheme there, to boot, which makes scouts say he will have an easier time adjusting to the NFL.

Limited 2020 action, unlimited potential

Unfortunately, because of the disrupted Big Ten collegiate season, he saw action in just five games in 2020. But from what he’s shown on the field, he’s ready for the next level. That’s good because the Rams defense is ready for him.

It’s been pointed out that he has athletic ability sufficient to cover tight ends down the field. With this Rams defense, and with the teams that the Rams will face this year, pass coverage from all its non-defensive linemen is crucial.

He’s got all the skills you look for in a linebacker, too: a solid run defender plus a sure open-field tackler. He can drop back and cover and blitzes sneaky well. He played through numerous nagging injuries last season, displaying gritty toughness.

That’s not a bad arrow to be able to deploy from your defensive quiver of options in today’s pass-happy NFL. As the Rams have added solid play in the secondary and the defensive line, the last missing piece to the puzzle is the linebacker role. McGrone can become such a keystone player for the Rams defense in 2021.