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jrry32

Jrry32's First Mock Draft of March

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There have been some interesting rumors since I last made my mock. In this mock, I'll explore a scenario where Saffold walks in FA. As always, I am not trying to guess what the Rams will do. I have no idea what they'll do. I am simply offering up possible scenarios based on my knowledge of our schemes, our tendencies, and players. I pick players I like whom I feel fit our scheme.
Cut
ILB Mark Barron
 
There's not much to say here. I think we're all agreed on this one. Barron stepped up in the playoffs, but we need somebody who offers more in terms of run fits.
 
Re-sign
CB Sam Shields
S Blake Countess
ILB Bryce Hager
ILB Cory Littleton - Second Round RFA Tender
CB Dominique Hatfield - ERFA Tender
RS Jojo Natson - ERFA Tender
DL Morgan Fox - ERFA Tender
CB Kevin Peterson - ERFA Tender
OLB Garrett Sickels - ERFA Tender
WR KhaDarel Hodge - ERFA Tender
 
I doubt there are too many surprises here (as I already mentioned Saffold leaving above). I would say the only two possible surprises are not re-signing Ndamukong Suh or Dante Fowler Jr. I think Suh wants his final multi-year contract. That will make it not feasible to bring him back. I like Fowler Jr., but I am wary of his price tag as a former top pick. I think we all expect Joyner to go.
 
Free Agency
[IMG]  
Timmy Jernigan NT
 
The Eagles look likely to let Jernigan go due to his high salary and missing a large chunk of 2018. Many of us want a large NT, but that has never been Wade's forte. While some will think Jernigan undersized at 6'2" 295, Jernigan is a country-strong DT who specializes in run stopping. However, Jernigan does have the ability to put some pressure on the QB. He's an outstanding fit as a 3-4 1-gap NT. Don't let size fool you, Jernigan is an ox in the middle.
 
[IMG] 
Brian Poole SS

Some people have already made it clear that they're not a fan of this move. That's fine, but I'm trusting my gut here. Poole is interesting because he has spent three years as a slot CB in Atlanta. He was great as a rookie, but he has been so-so (at best) since then. Where he has consistently shined, though, is in his physicality as a run defender and his blitzing off the edge. I think, like LaMarcus Joyner, Poole is a better safety than CB. He doesn't possess the short-area quickness or loose hips to match up well in the slot. Nonetheless, Poole has terrific instincts and is quite adept at reading route combinations. I think he offers exactly the sort of well-rounded skill-set that Wade values in a safety. And after not being tendered by Atlanta and so-so years as a slot CB, I think we can land him at a discounted price despite the fact that he's only 26 years old.
 
[IMG] 
Blake Bortles QB

Bortles' stock is at the lowest it has ever been. He stunk up the field in 2018 and was one reason why the Jaguars drastically under-performed. Once he is cut, I don't see him getting a big-money deal. I think we can swoop in and offer him a fairly cheap deal. Why I love this idea is because Bortles has actually played solid football when things around him are good. When he's protected, has good play-calling, and good WRs, he's capable of being a competent starting QB. We're only looking for a backup QB. If we have a guy who is capable of being a competent starter in the right situation, we're ahead of most other teams. Think of guys like Nick Foles, Ryan Fitzpatrick, and Case Keenum. When they were in bad situations, they looked bad. But they looked like competent QBs when things were going well around them. That made them valuable.
 
 
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Ryan Groy C/OG
 
We tried to sign Groy after the 2016 season when McVay and Kromer had just been hired. The Bills matched our offer and kept him. Groy hasn't played as well away from Kromer's system, so I think we can sign him now cheaper than what we offered a couple years ago. He'll provide quality depth at Center and Guard. With Saffold gone, it's smart to have a guy who can give us quality snaps off the bench at all three interior OL positions.
 
Trade
LA Rams trade Round 4 Pick #31
Kansas City Chiefs trade OLB Justin Houston
 
Chiefs are looking to move Houston because of how much he costs and their need to open cap room. They've been shopping him of late. With Houston's age, injury history, and salary, I don't see the Chiefs getting a lot for him. We got Talib for a 5th last year; I think we can land Houston for similar compensation. Houston is still a good all around OLB.
 
LA Rams trade Round 1 Pick #31
Jacksonville Jaguars trade Round 2 Pick #6 and Round 3 Pick #35
 
The Jaguars trade up for a player in the late first (possibly an OL). We get our third round pick back.
 
LA Rams trade Round 3 Pick #31 and Round 3 Pick #35
Tennessee Titans trade Round 3 Pick #18 and Round 4 Pick #19
 
NFL Draft
Round 2 Pick #6 - Jerry Tillery DL Notre Dame
Analysis: The Rams met with Tillery at the Combine. As it stands now, Tillery is a gifted pass rushing DT who needs to improve as a run defender. He's our replacement for Brockers after 2019. During 2019, he'll be a hell of a rotational pass rusher. At 6'6" 295 with long arms, Tillery possesses an explosive get-off with impressive hand usage and a variety of pass rush moves. He keeps OLs off balance with his diverse approach to pass rushing. He has the ability to win with both quickness and power. On one snap, he'll fire off the LOS, get to the OG's hip early, and win with a rip or swat. On the next snap, he'll fire off the LOS and attack the OG, who overset to counter his speed, with a stab move and push him back to the QB. Simply put, Tillery has a full arsenal of moves and uses them throughout the game to get consistent pressure. I look forward to him learning from Aaron Donald. As a run defender, Tillery has the quickness and speed to disrupt zone blocking schemes, but his high pad level allows him to get washed out of plays too often. At times, he shows the ability to anchor, power his way into the backfield, and play through blocks with his length to disrupt running plays. Nevertheless, he's very inconsistent as a run defender. For every good rep he has, he has a rep where he's moved far too easily out of his gap. That all said, the potential is there if he improves his pad level and anchor.
 
Round 3 Pick #18 - David Montgomery HB Iowa State
Analysis: David Montgomery reminds me of Le'Veon Bell. While Montgomery has pedestrian speed, he is a highly effective runner due to his elite vision and patience. Montgomery makes it look easy as he sifts his way through chaos. Beyond his vision and patience, Montgomery makes defenders look silly with his ability to stop and start, cut on a dime, and fluid elusive moves. At 5'10" 222, he moves like a ballerina. However, while he's very elusive, he runs like a 220 pound back should, with power and contact balance. He has consistently ranked among the NCAA leaders in broken tackles since becoming a starting HB. Montgomery, like Bell, also shines in the other areas of the game. He's already a NFL-caliber pass protector, showing great blitz recognition, highly effective cut blocks, and a willingness to sacrifice his body to protect his QB. As a receiver, Montgomery is an excellent checkdown option. He's a sure-handed receiver who runs quality routes and is good at settling in the soft spots underneath coverage. Montgomery is a three-down HB who has the entire sets of tools except for top-end speed. Gurley and Montgomery can keep each other fresh.
 
Round 3 Pick #36 - Kahale Warring TE San Diego State
Analysis: Warring played in SDSU's old school, run-first, pro-style smashmouth offense. He has a lot of experience working as an inline blocker with the technical prowess, functional strength, and size (6'6" 250) to be effective in that role in the NFL. As it stands now, he's a solid blocker who handles LBs and DBs with his polished technical skill, outstanding body control and feet, and strong understanding of positioning; DLs give him a bit more trouble one on one because of their superior power. Still, the kid can block effectively, but that's not what excites me about him. Warring is an incredibly impressive receiving TE. He's a smooth route runner with the quickness and change of direction skills of a big WR. His routes are very crisp, and he uses his size/strength to create additional separation at the break point. Warring also possesses strong mitts, outstanding body control, and the ability to climb the ladder and win in the air. I think a guy like this will excite McVay because he has the ability block inline and be a mismatch in the slot. Warring reminds me a lot of Zach Ertz coming out of college.
 
Round 4 Pick #19 - Dennis Daley OT/OG South Carolina
Analysis: Daley is a bit of a late bloomer as a JUCO transfer. He was tossed into the fire at SC and has generally held up well. Josh Allen and Jachai Polite gave him some problems, but Daley improved as the year went on and had a very impressive performance against Clemson's gifted DL (especially Clelin Ferrell). At 6'5" 317 with around 33.5" arms, Daley has the size to play either tackle or guard. He also has the physical attributes to play either tackle or guard. Daley's best attributes are his power and anchor. At SC, he played LT. He has good enough feet and bend to stick outside in the NFL. As a run blocker, while he has punch, power, and explosion, he doesn't get as much movement as he should because he doesn't play with leverage. As a pass blocker, Daley needs to improve on his sets to keep speed rushers from running the arc on him. He has the base and anchor to stymie bull rushers, his punches are generally well timed and well placed, and he has a great understanding of the game. He is, however, susceptible at times to inside counters because he's a split second late to react. All in all, Daley is an OL who legitimately has the potential to start at every OL spot but Center. He has a high football IQ and has improved rapidly at the college level. I think he'd be a great fit here learning from Kromer and our vets on the OL.
 
Round 5 Pick #31 - Khalil Hodge ILB Buffalo
Analysis: Hodge didn't receive an invite to the Combine (which is just nuts). Over the past two years, Hodge has averaged 148 tackles per year. He is a three-time captain and a true defensive leader. His football character is off the charts. However, Hodge is also a limited athlete who fits more into that thumper role that a lot of teams no longer value. Hodge diagnoses plays quicker than any LB I've watched this year. He almost never gets it wrong. He also displays good speed downhill, he has the size (6'1" 250) and strength to take on blockers, he plays with consistent gap integrity, and he rarely misses tackles. Hodge also shows comfort backpedaling in zone coverage and reads the QB well. That all said, Hodge lacks the speed to run sideline to sideline, and he lacks the short-area quickness and fluid hips to handle man coverage responsibilities well in the NFL. He's a very smart and instinctual defender, but he has his athletic limitations. I'd also like to see him use his hands better to keep blockers from getting to his chest. That all said, instincts, play recognition, and football IQ will take you a long ways in the NFL.
 
Round 6 Pick #31 - David Long CB Michigan
Analysis: I like David Long. He has some limitations. He's undersized at 5'11" 198. He doesn't possess great long speed, so he isn't a guy you'll want to play consistently on an island. That all said, Long can play both outside and in the slot (and did so in college). He has great press-man technique. He's accurate with his hands and patient with his footwork. He is a sound and aware zone defender who doesn't freelance, and he tackles well when needed. I was a bit disappointed with how passive he is as a run defender. He seems content to stay glued to his blocks. But in coverage, he's very sticky, very physical, and consistently pesters the WR. On the down side, he can get bullied by bigger WRs and can be a bit grabby at times. Still, he's a guy who could step in and provide solid play if Talib, Peters, or NRC suffers an injury.
 
Round 7 Pick #37 - Malik Carney OLB North Carolina
Analysis: Carney is an intriguing pick late in the Draft. At 6'2" 251 with average athleticism, he's probably not going to be a future star. However, Carney is a guy who could stick on the roster as a solid all around OLB and a good special teamer. As an OLB, he has the ability to drop into coverage, play the run, and get after the QB. As a pass rusher, he doesn't have the explosive get off or speed to win with speed in the NFL, but he does have heavy hands, good power, natural leverage, an assortment of moves, and relentless effort which give him some upside in this area. His best move is his spin move, which is quite fluid and plays well off his power. As a run defender, Carney has strength and natural leverage, but his height and play recognition limit him at this stage. He can anchor in against the run and set the edge, but he's late to recognize plays and needs to improve at understanding the blocking schemes to prevent from getting pushed out of the play upfield or pushed down the LOS on down blocks. All in all, Carney is a guy who has the tools to potentially be a solid starter or a good rotational player, and his relentless effort and strong football character should give him a chance to stick here.
 
Projected Starters
QB: Jared Goff
HB: Todd Gurley
XWR: Brandin Cooks
ZWR: Robert Woods
SLWR: Cooper Kupp
TE: Tyler Higbee or Gerald Everett
LT: Andrew Whitworth
LG: Joseph Noteboom
C: John Sullivan
RG: Austin Blythe
RT: Rob Havenstein
 
5T: Michael Brockers
NT: Timmy Jernigan
3T: Aaron Donald
WOLB: Justin Houston
Mo LB: Cory Littleton
Mike LB: Micah Kiser
SOLB: Samson Ebukam
RCB: Aqib Talib
LCB: Marcus Peters
SLCB: Nickell Robey-Coleman
FS: John Johnson
SS: Brian Poole
 
K: Greg Zuerlein
P: Johnny Hekker
LS: Jake McQuaide

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It would concern me losing Saffold, but you cover yourself with depth with the signing of Groy and the drafting of Daley.  Love David Montgomery and I'm hoping he lasts because with the info coming out on Gurley I believe it's a must pick.  Houston's injury history concerns me, but he's still can rush the passer.  Overall, seems like a good plan and IMO, Jernigan would be a coup at NT and in this scenario if Houston stayed healthy, the defense would be better.  

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7 hours ago, den-the-coach said:

It would concern me losing Saffold, but you cover yourself with depth with the signing of Groy and the drafting of Daley.  Love David Montgomery and I'm hoping he lasts because with the info coming out on Gurley I believe it's a must pick.  Houston's injury history concerns me, but he's still can rush the passer.  Overall, seems like a good plan and IMO, Jernigan would be a coup at NT and in this scenario if Houston stayed healthy, the defense would be better.  

Good to see you, Den! Losing Saffold wouldn't be my call, but I figured I should consider a scenario where we do.

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I like everything except for the Brian Poole signing. Well done. I hear Malik Jackson is on the trade block for Jax. Could we explore a trade for Brockers straight up or cut Brockers and trade for Malik? Experience in Wade's system. He really shined in 2015 under Wade when Derek Wolfe was suspended that lead to his big pay day.

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LOVE Jerry Tillery! Been on him since there were rumors he was going to declare last year. I think he is the exact type of guy to pair with Donald, especially if we grab an anchor like Jernigan.

Speaking of, he would be a great fit, would we be able to pull off the correct contract for him? Maybe if we arent bringing back Saffold (and possibly some other Cap moves) Unfortunately, Im learning that a ton of these players that may be unexpected hitting the market are now on "Team Options" which will not be signings exempt from the Compensatory draft pick calculation. Not saying it will prohibit us, but just something to be cautious about. (if someone ike Jernigan is signed, it will likely be a longer term contract)

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11 hours ago, StLunatic88 said:

LOVE Jerry Tillery! Been on him since there were rumors he was going to declare last year. I think he is the exact type of guy to pair with Donald, especially if we grab an anchor like Jernigan.

Speaking of, he would be a great fit, would we be able to pull off the correct contract for him? Maybe if we arent bringing back Saffold (and possibly some other Cap moves) Unfortunately, Im learning that a ton of these players that may be unexpected hitting the market are now on "Team Options" which will not be signings exempt from the Compensatory draft pick calculation. Not saying it will prohibit us, but just something to be cautious about. (if someone ike Jernigan is signed, it will likely be a longer term contract)

With Jernigan, I signed him to a one year deal. With him coming off the injury, I think it makes sense for both sides. This is a nice spot for him to rehab his value. He's still young and could land a massive contract with a good year. But yes, he will count against us in the comp pick formula.

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