After weeks of speculation on trading the second overall draft choice to a number of different teams, the St. Louis Rams ultimately decided that the Washington Redskins offered the best compensation. On Sunday afternoon, news broke that the Skins offered the deal of the young century in exchange for the right to draft Robert Griffin III in the 2012 NFL Draft.
In exchange for the number two pick, the Rams will slide down just four spots to sixth overall in the draft order. They will also accumulate an additional second round choice (39th overall) in this year’s selection as well as the Redskins’ first round picks in both 2013 and 2014. Many may have thought the Rams were losing leverage when it came to moving the pick before free agency, but the Redskins’ desire to land a franchise quarterback earned St. Louis a tremendous deal in return.
As mentioned, the fact that this deal has taken place prior to free agency greatly benefits the team being able to narrow down its list of needs and zero in on certain players. The Rams will now likely focus in which player best fits their needs at the 6th pick rather than the lofty 2nd slot.
Reports have linked the team to Alabama’s Trent Richardson recently saying that the Rams are very high on the Bama product. It is likely that he will be the best player available at that point in the draft assuming things go as planned and both Andrew Luck and RG3 are chose first and second while Oklahoma State receiver Justin Blackmon, USC offensive tackle Matt Kalil, and LSU corner Morris Claiborne follow in no particular order.
Although the Rams would undoubtedly love to add Blackmon, Kalil, or Claiborne to their roster, should none of them be available, Richardson makes the most sense. Even though the team still has Steven Jackson, many believe that the flexibility of a two-back set would take a great deal of pressure off of quarterback Sam Bradford.
Don’t believe that the Rams are content just yet however as many feel that the team could maneuver even more (up or down) to target a particular player and shake things up even more on draft day. There is no doubt that with the bounty of picks extracted from the Redskins in this deal, the Rams now have a great deal of control over the 2012 NFL Draft. General Manager Les Snead has set this team up to build a great foundation for years to come.