The 2018 NFL Draft is just two weeks away, which means that Draftmas is back. Draftmas will take a look at each NFL team heading into this year’s draft, what their needs are and who they could be targeting. Draftmas continues today with the 2018 Los Angeles Rams NFL Draft profile.
The Rams were one of the best stories of the 2017 NFL season. They finished 11-5 and champions of the NFC West. Sean McVay entered the season under heavy scrutiny, as he was the youngest head coach in modern NFL history.
However, he resurrected this franchise offensively. The Rams finished first in points and 10th in yards. Whether it was Jared Goff and company through the air or Todd Gurley on the ground, McVay’s creativity took the league by storm.
Defensively, the Rams transitioned from a 4-3 to a 3-4 defense under longtime coordinator Wade Phillips. Phillips has an undeniable ability to pressure opposing quarterbacks, and that is exactly what he did. While this unit finished 12th in points and 19th in yards, they were top five in sacks and turnovers.
Given the transactions made by the 2018 Los Angeles Rams, it is clear they are in “win now” mode. The additions of Marcus Peters, Aqib Talib, Ndamukong Suh and Brandin Cooks have solidified the Rams as winners of this offseason heading into the draft. That title does not always translate to postseason success, but the Rams have addressed a lot of their potential needs and are poised to make a deep run in this year’s playoffs.
Picks and Needs
The Los Angeles Rams’ success in 2018 will be predicated on their free agent moves. With only one pick in the first three rounds, it is unlikely they will find multiple impact players to help them in 2018.
Overall, the Rams have eight picks in this year’s draft, with four of those picks being in sixth round.
First round (0 picks):
Second round (0):
Third round (1): 87
Fourth round (1): 111, 135, 136
Fifth round (0):
Sixth round (5): 176, 183, 194, 195
Seventh round (0):
Offensive guard – This unit is very good. The only spot that appears to be vulnerable is the right guard position. Jamon Brown has never been an above average player and Rodger Saffold has missed four or more games four times in his career with the Rams.
Linebacker – The Rams made some tangible improvements on the defensive line and in the secondary this offseason. However, they have yet to address the linebacker position. After trading away Alec Ogletree, Ramik Wilson is slated to start next to Mark Barron. Hopefully Wilson will return to his 2016 form as a starter for the Rams this season.
Pick No. 87: Frank Ragnow, G/C, Arkansas
NFL teams look to add impact players in rounds one through three. It was a close call between giving them offensive line depth, or a potential starter at inside linebacker. In the end, an injury to a starter on the offensive line would be more devastating than an injury to a starting linebacker.
The Rams can reinforce their offensive line with a versatile player in Frank Ragnow. Ragnow started at both center and guard during his tenure at Arkansas. His senior season ended with a high ankle sprain, and as a result, an abbreviated final year. It is likely he will be a Day 2 pick in this year’s draft.
The 2018 Los Angeles Rams will likely be defined by the phrase “Super Bowl or bust.” Whether that is a fair statement is an argument for another time. The Rams will face a new set of challenges in 2018, but it appears they have the coaching and talent to overcome those challenges and make a run at the Lombardi Trophy.
Make sure to tune in tomorrow for the Carolina Panthers 2018 NFL Draft profile.