The 2021 NFL Draft begins on April 29, which means that The Game Haus will be writing draft profiles for every team. Each NFL team will be evaluated heading into this year’s draft, as our staff recaps their last season, highlights their needs and pinpoints their potential 2021 NFL Draft targets. The Los Angeles Rams are the subject of today’s 2021 NFL Draft profile.
Los Angeles finished second in the NFC West with a 10-6 record in 2020 and beat their division rival Seahawks in the Wild Card round. Their season ended the next week with a loss to the Packers in the Divisional Round.
The Rams managed to pull off one of the biggest moves of the entire 2021 offseason by offloading their Super Bowl quarterback, Jared Goff and his nine-figure salary in a trade that sent Matthew Stafford to Los Angeles. They lost two first round picks and a third round pick in the deal, but now have a proven veteran with a big arm to carry into the next season.
Their league-best defense and new quarterback means their Super Bowl window remains wide open. The NFC West may have gotten tougher, but the excuses are running out for the Rams to not at least be in the NFC Championship Game in 2021. Here is how they could use their first three picks to get to that game, or even the Super Bowl.
2021 NFL Picks
Los Angeles will have three picks to use in the first three rounds of the 2021 NFL Draft.
First Round (zero picks)
Second Round (one pick): No. 57
Third Round (two picks): Nos. 88 & 103
Offensive line- The Rams lost center Austin Blythe to free agency and perennial Pro Bowl left tackle Andrew Whitworth to retirement. They need to look for some linemen to replace these two huge departures. Luckily, this is a deep draft at the offensive line position.
Defensive back- Los Angeles also lost two big pieces on the back end of their defense in the offseason. John Johnson and Troy Hill were both poached by the Cleveland Browns. Plus, their defensive coordinator is now the head coach of their “roommates,” the Chargers. Some new blood at the defensive back position could be coached up with their new coordinator, which could make second or third round picks look like first round selections.
Pass-catchers- New, young pass-catchers could be on the menu since the offense is getting a re-tool as Matt Stafford takes the reins. A new tight end to replace Gerald Everett or wide receiver to give some competition to Van Jefferson would not go amiss.
2021 Draft Targets
Pick No. 57: Alex Leatherwood, OT, Alabama
Leatherwood is a supremely undervalued offensive tackle talent that would easily go in the first round if it were not for all of the other offensive lineman prospects that are being more heavily touted. Regardless, he is a two-time national champion, an Outland trophy-winner, a Jacobs Blocking-trophy recipient and was named to the All-SEC first team twice. Leatherwood is a starting-caliber tackle that can begin to fill the hole left by Whitworth and his historic career.
Pick No. 88: Amon-Ra St. Brown, WR, USC
St. Brown has an NFL bloodline (his brother plays for the Packers), and plays locally at USC, so he knows the Los Angeles market well, along with the pressures that come with it. He was All Pac-12 in 2020, as he racked up 41 catches and almost 500 yards, with seven touchdowns. His best year came in 2019, in which he eclipsed 1,000 yards, adding six touchdowns. St. Brown would serve the Rams well right away, maybe even becoming a third-option for Stafford if he gets enough playing time.
Pick No. 103: Robert Rochell, CB, Central Arkansas
Robert Rochell is not getting a lot of attention, probably due to the fact that he plays for the FCS’ Central Arkansas. He is NFL-ready, though, despite playing against FCS competition. Rochell has racked up 10 interceptions over his four-year career at UCA, along with three forced fumbles. His tackling is not very polished, as he goes for the ball more than he should, but the Rams could do worse with a triple-digit selection.
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