Trying to prognosticate the eventual compensatory draft selections in the NFL is not quite as complicated as attempting to forecast the weather, but it still has a vast range of possibilities. Though the St. Louis Rams already boast their full allotment of picks for this May’s 2014 NFL Draft in addition to the No. 2 overall selection courtesy of the Washington Redskins, the team could still use any additional picks possible.
Free agency is likely off limits for the Rams after spending some serious cash last offseason to land left tackle Jake Long and tight end Jared Cook. Both players could be said to have flopped a bit in their debut seasons with Cook only producing 51 catches for 671 yards and five touchdowns and Long tearing his right ACL and MCL in Week 16.
Regardless of that uncertainty and precarious salary cap situation, the Rams are in the most enviable position of any team in the league looking ahead to the draft. That desirable situation is likely to get even better for St. Louis courtesy of the compensatory selections that guru Craig Turner is projecting the team to receive.
Though they won’t officially be awarded until the owners’ meeting from March 23-26, Turner has a pretty solid track record of projecting the picks to be awarded via the compensatory system. Last year he had 24 teams spot on with their picks and exact rounds while his only misses came from five teams he expected to get a pick that did not and three picks he missed due to a gray area in the award process.
After sufficiently delaying the headline, Turner has the Rams receiving a sixth-round pick for the loss of Brandon Gibson and three seventh-rounders for Rob Turner, Craig Dahl and Bradley Fletcher respectively. Add in the fact that the team has an additional seventh-round pick via the Josh Gordy trade to the Indianapolis Colts and the Rams will be loaded for bear in the late rounds of the draft.
And you might be thinking these picks are insignificant since they occur so late in the draft, but the team turned a sixth-rounder in Greg “Legatron” Zuerlein in 2012, found running back Daryl Richardson in the seventh round in the same year and scored defensive end Eugene Sims via the sixth-round in 2010. These picks can all turn into great depth and potentially really flesh out a secondary that desperately needs help this offseason. The cornerback position is especially deep with 25 players ranked among the top 189 according to CBS Sports. This will allow the Rams to snag some potential steals late in the draft and potentially develop them into consistent starters in the coming seasons.