Top 10 sleepers for LA Rams heading into 2023 NFL Draft

Les Snead Los Angeles Rams
Les Snead Los Angeles Rams / John McCoy/GettyImages
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LA Rams Draft 2023 NFL Draft Mekhi Garner
Mekhi Garner LSU / Jonathan Bachman/GettyImages

Sleeper VII: Mekhi Garner, Cornerback, LSU

There will always be something about a 6-foot-2 or taller defensive back that makes me stop, look and listen. Is that just some personal bias, an unconscious interest in the LA Rams filling their secondary with bigger bodies? Or does a taller defensive back bring certain advantages that the Rams secondary would be wise to invest in? I really cannot say, but it has led me to name LSU defensive back Mekhi Garner as the next sleeper on this list.

NFL Draft Buzz. Rd 5. Defensive back. LSU. Mekhi Garner. player. NFL Draft Profile. 51

What I don't like about him: For a young defensive back who stands 6-foot-2 and weighs 212 pounds, he is not particularly powerful, not particularly swift, and did not perform exceptionally well in those Pro Day events to track speed burst or ability to change direction. Because he was bigger and stronger than many college receivers, he relied too heavily on those advantages to carry him through NCAA football. He won't have those advantages in the NFL.

What I do like about him: You cannot coach a guy to stand 6-foot-2 and weigh 212 pounds. What you can coach a guy to do is play with more intensity, read his keys more effectively, play more physically, train both his footwork and handwork to become tools, rather than liabilities. Due to his size, the door is wide open to moving him to either a safety position or keeping him in at cornerback.

Because the LA Rams secondary is such a work in progress, a prospect like Mekhi Garner gives the Rams defense an opportunity to use him in the short-staffed role in 2023, and perhaps beyond. Perhaps the part that pushes him over the top for me, if he is coached up, he could fill a similar role on the Rams defense that Ramsey once provided. That is, he can match up with big physical tight ends as well as help turn plays in off the edge.