When, with the No. 14 pick in the 2012 NFL Draft, the St. Louis Rams selected DT Michael Brockers, a lot of draft pundits were surprised—and some of them, though not us, were a little disappointed. But whatever you think of Brockers in particular, one thing is true in general: The Rams' run defense was awful last season, and Brockers won't have to do too much to be an improvement.
Last year the Rams allowed an average of 4.8 yards per carry on defense, 28th in football, and that came on 510 attempts—the third-most in the NFL. Those 27 touchdowns and all that chewed-up yardage went a long way toward the Rams' 407 points allowed.
Brockers has been knocked for his pass-rush performance in college, but with Robert Quinn and Chris Long on the edges they might not require much of that from him. If he can keep the NFC West's running backs from consistently eating clock and football field five yards at a time, he'll be a year-one success.
More NFL Draft coverage from SB Nation St. Louis:
- The Rams also shored up their defense by selecting, first, cornerback Janoris Jenkins. Is his undeniable talent worth the risks brought up by his character issues?
- Then they grabbed safety Trumaine Johnson early in the third round.