So you wanted a wide receiver, didn't you? Too bad. The Jacksonville Jaguars jumped into the No. 5 pick of the 2012 NFL Draft to snag Justin Blackmon one spot ahead of the St. Louis Rams. Smartly, the Rams decided to trade down to the No. 14 pick in an exchange with the Dallas Cowboys, presumably to snag Notre Dame WR Michael Floyd.
You know, until the Arizona Cardinals drafted him with the 13th pick.
Only the Rams... Sigh.
Michael Brockers anyone? The LSU Defensive Tackle was the Rams' pick with #14 and the reaction was swift and decisive: WTF? Hashtag LOLRams. Facepalm. In any combination.
Brockers was a one-year starter with two career sacks and the weakest bench press at the combine for d-linemen. In a rapidly evolving fun n' gun league, the Rams once again were left at the altar searching for that partner for Bradford, the last of the mega-paid draft bonus babies. And I can't say I wasn't looking forward to writing a piece defending Justin Blackmon to his critics and searching message boards for mock Blackmons in Rams jerseys.
But we've got ourselves a Brockers. So here are four reasons that you shouldn't hate having his back.
1. He would have been a top 5 pick in 2013. Anyone can wander out and get hit by a bus, but the scouts are in love with Brockers's potential... and he's got tons to spare. The reason he wasn't a super-blue chipper in 2012 was lack of playing time for his career, not the things he was doing on the field when he played. He was one of the few players on LSU who showed up for the national championship game in January and consistently beat double teams inside against the elite SEC teams. Fast forward 12 months and you'd LOVE this pick.
2. Jeff Fisher got Albert Haynesworth to play hard. Read that sentence again. Fisher's teams are built inside-out and now the Rams sport one of the youngest and most talented d-lines in the NFL. The new coach was brought in to toughen these sally's up and the Brockers pick signals what we already assumed... the Rams are going to be tougher. In the NFL that means stuffing the run and attacking the QB. They're better equipped to do that today.
3. The Rams always wanted a DT. With the Rams having three picks in the 2012 second round, and the WR draft deep, it was the smart play to take the DT when you could and get a WR later on. Many were questioning Blackmon's potential to be a true No. 1 and Floyd was a pretty big risk at No. 13. So maybe the Rammies were just smart here, picking up another pick in the 2nd round that should be deluxe while also actually getting the guy they liked. I know it's hard to trust the Rams, but don't we have to give them the benefit of the doubt until they start losing some games?
4. He majored in "General Studies." That's code for, "He was at LSU to learn how to play football and get drafted high in the pros." He wasn't there to broaden his horizons... he was a football machine.
The Rams are going to get a WR. (note: PLEASE SWEET BABY JESUS) and in the meantime picked up an elite DT. I'm not saying we won't be back here later this weekend ripping the Rams 2012 draft.
But we're one pick in... and that pick isn't as bad as you think.