NFL Mock Draft 2013: Rams could upgrade offense in 1st round at two key positions

Joe Robbins

St. Louis has a big decision to make with their free agent receivers, but an additional first round pick should help ease the burden. See which players are going to the Rams in this latest mock.

The St. Louis Rams have the benefit of two first round picks this year, which is good because they are expected to have almost no room in their cap space for free agency. With Danny Amendola and Brandon Gibson both unrestricted free agents, the Rams could look to the draft to upgrade at receiver in the draft and it could come as early as in the first round.

For more on the Rams, check out Turf Show Times

Thanks to trading the second pick in 2012 (Robert Griffin III) to the Redskins, the Rams have two first-round picks this year and two first-round picks next year, as long as they hold suit to the current position they are in. It does not appear right now that any players at the top of the draft are quite elite enough to trade up for, so it's not crazy to think that the Rams would like to stay right where they are at the moment with the 16th and 22nd overall selections. They've got several big holes to fill if they want to take the next step in 2013 and compete again after a solid 7-8-1 finish last year.

Especially solid when you consider that the Rams only won seven games total between 2007-2009.

Where St. Louis still struggles is on offense, and the possibility of losing Amendola and Gibson doesn't help, but with Chris Givens emerging last season and Brian Quick still just going into his second year, there's hope either way. That doesn't mean that the Rams won't be reloading the position in the draft, and Matthew Fairburn of SBNation projected Keenan Allen to St. Louis in his latest mock:

Keenan Allen needs to have a solid showing at his pro day to justify this pick, but this fall, he was the best wide receiver in this class. He needs to prove that his knee is OK and that he has the straight-line speed to be a No. 1 wide receiver.

That pick by Fairburn came after the Rams made another significant upgrade on offense, taking tackle Lane Johnson out of Oklahoma with the 16th pick:

The roster has steadily improved in recent years, but the offensive line remains an issue. Lane Johnson's value may be even higher than this pick, so the Rams luck out.

If this was how the draft went down for the Rams, they would be able to give Sam Bradford more time in the pocket to throw the ball and would also give him a nice, big, fast target in Allen. Even if they should re-sign Amendola, the Rams still lack another outside threat and Allen would make a good amount of sense. Johnson, one of those "physical freak of nature" types, could provide stability at a position that has lacked it since the retirement of Orlando Pace.

Maybe these Rams are getting a little bit closer to the good ol' days.

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