In covering the St. Louis Rams and all of their activity prior to the 2013 NFL Draft, General Manager Les Snead just seems like a guy I would want to pull up a bar stool with and talk about life. Snead has an attitude that is rarely seen in the league as a rare blend of business and casual, but most of the time it seems like he doesn’t even realize it. Along with the rest of the Rams’ scouts and coaches (including head honcho Jeff Fisher), he will be plenty busy over the next three days. Just which way the team may be leaning regarding their slate of picks is still very much up in the air.
The misdirection surrounding the draft is no mystery. Every team does it with some even taking it to an extreme and scheduling visits with players they have no intention of selecting. In an interview session regarding the draft, Snead told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch: “So don’t be offended if everything we say up here is not totally accurate.”
No offense taken, Les.
One thing that Snead has shown in his short time as the GM is that he is not at all averse to draft day trades. He wouldn’t rule anything out when asked about the idea of moving up to get a player saying:
“Even if you trade up I don’t think that player is necessarily, ‘Hey, he’s gonna put you over the top. You’re gonna go undefeated per se.’ But if there’s somebody there that you want, that you think fills a role, helps the team, you can go get him.”
Another topic that came up in the pre-draft grilling session was with Coach Fisher and his track record of not selecting offensive linemen in the first round. To dispel any thought that he has apprehension toward doing just that, Fisher said:
“It was circumstance. There was one taken or two taken before I got there in the first round. They played a long time and they played at a high level. In the past, I think if you do a good job of evaluating and projecting, you can get quality players throughout the draft and that was our philosophy. I think we’ve done a real good job of evaluating up to this point.”
There’s clearly a sense of confidence with the Rams as they head into the final hours before the 2013 selection process. While many have linked players like wide receiver Tavon Austin and safety Kenny Vaccaro to the Rams from the start, plans can change in just one pick and that will force a team to readjust their entire draft board. This club appears to be quite content with their evaluations leading up to the draft and that poise will serve them well when the heat is on starting Thursday evening.