What do the LA Rams need in the 2023 NFL Draft?

Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports /
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LA Rams Draft Rams Roster Alaric Jackson
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Must address OT, Edge, and DB:

I – Offensive Tackle: The LA Rams may or may not have a franchise blindside blocker on their current roster, but of all the pieces to a true NFL Championship roster, that is the one area that truly became a huge question mark in 2022. That means that the Rams need to find that star offensive lineman in the offseason, and the 2023 NFL Draft is as good of a place as anywhere to do so.

The Rams gave offensive tackle Joe Noteboom every opportunity this season. But after just six starts, he played 325 offensive snaps, surrendered five quarterback sacks, and committed three penalties. That’s pretty bad even for a rookie, but it’s downright alarming with a veteran who was promoted into a role he has had plenty of experience at. Of course, the Rams could earmark OL Alaric Jackson, IPP OL Max Pircher, or even re-sign veteran OT Ty Nsekhe to compete for the starting role in 2023. But if there is a promising young offensive tackle on the board early in Round 2, I believe that the Rams must choose him with no questions asked.

 II – Edge Rusher: The LA Rams’ edge rusher position was a complete mess in 2022. The Rams lost veteran OLB Von Miller to a free agent bidding war, outright cut veteran OLB Justin Hollins (who had a great debut on the Green Bay Packers defense), and repurposed DL Michael Hoecht into an OLB role. While the team has not benefitted from any play of rookie OLB Daniel Hardy, the team needs reinforcements at their pass rush.

III -Defensive back: The LA Rams project to lose both starters Nick Scott and Taylor Rapp this offseason, and the Rams seldom make an effort to extend safeties beyond their rookie contract. The Rams also project to lose both Troy Hill and David Long Jr. That’s four key defensive backs who project to test the NFL Free Agency market in 2023.

The Rams did draft defensive backs in the 2022 NFL Draft – Cobie Durant, Derion Kendrick, Russ Yeast, and Quentin Lake. The team even has retained rookie T.J. Carter on the team’s practice squad. But even if the young bucks are ready to take starting roles for this secondary (highly debated right now), the Rams will need plenty of depth for nickel and dime packages.