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, Calif. (AP) General manager Les Snead already made most of his big offseason moves well before this draft.
That’s one reason why the Los Angeles Rams don’t have a pick in the first two rounds.
Even though they probably won’t get started in the draft until Friday night, Snead and his front office are still doing plenty of work to identify more depth and youth to surround those new veteran stars already acquired by the Rams this year.
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”It’s a different draft,” Snead said Tuesday. ”We start in the third round, not the first. … Because we’ve focused a lot on (the third and fourth) rounds, we’re excited about picking in those rounds. It’s all going to depend on if some of the guys that we’re excited about fall to that area of the draft. You can use all the analytics in the world, but you don’t know what the other 31 teams are going to do.”
The NFC West champion Rams already did plenty in the three months since their incredible one-season turnaround ended with a playoff loss to Atlanta.
Los Angeles has signed star defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, acquired veteran cornerbacks Marcus Peters, Aqib Talib and Sam Shields Nick Nelson Super Bowl LI Jersey
, and used their first-round pick to trade for potential No. 1 receiver Brandin Cooks.
For the second straight year, the Rams don’t have a first-round pick. They traded last year’s pick to move up to get Jared Goff in 2016, and the Patriots will be picking at No. 23 on Thursday after sending Cooks to Los Angeles.
That’s perfectly fine with coach Sean McVay.
”We felt very good about that,” he said. ”What we were able to acquire for what we were giving up, we felt very strong about it. … If you told me we would get a player like that at 23, I’d be throwing a pool party, and I don’t even have a pool.”
Here are more things to know about the Rams’ draft:
START AT 3
The Rams also don’t have a second-round pick because they shipped it to Buffalo last summer for receiver Sammy Watkins, who turned one decent season in McVay’s offense into a lavish free-agent deal with Kansas City. Los Angeles also seems incredibly pleased with that exchange Authentic Nyheim Hines Jersey
, given Watkins’ role in the club’s first winning season since 2003.
FILL A NEED
Snead acknowledged the Rams will make draft choices for specific roster needs, even if he won’t outline them: ”I think all of y’all have common sense and can figure out where we’re going with that.”
Indeed, the Rams obviously are in need of depth on both lines, and they must find a new middle linebacker after trading top tackler Alec Ogletree to the New York Giants. There should be plenty of candidates still available with the 87th overall pick, and Snead indicated the Rams would be aggressive in trading up if necessary.
The Rams have only one pick in the first two days, but their draft will pick up on Saturday with three fourth-round picks and four sixth-round picks. The front office still plans to pay close attention to the first two rounds while contemplating the chance to move up.
”Every year, the draft shows that there are guys that aren’t just household names that can come in and make an impact,” Snead said. ”That’s the goal and us Wholesale P.J. Hall Jersey
, trying to find those guys.”
HITS, MISSES AND BARGAINS
Snead chose six eventual Pro Bowlers during his first six drafts with the Rams, including Todd Gurley and Aaron Donald – the two reigning Players of the Year. He also used the second overall pick on offensive tackle Greg Robinson, one of the biggest busts in recent NFL history.
But Snead, a longtime scout for the Falcons, likely has more draft hits than misses in his portfolio. He has also unearthed plenty of mid-round finds over the past half-decade.
Just last season, he used two third-round picks on receiver Cooper Kupp, who caught 62 passes for 869 yards as a rookie Adidas Pekka Rinne Jersey
, and safety John Johnson III, who made 75 tackles and started 11 games. He has landed starting tight end Tyler Higbee, Pro Bowl kick returner Pharoh Cooper and promising pass-rusher Samson Ebukam in the fourth round over the past two years.
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