The Los Angeles Rams surpassed many people’s expectations this season, going 10-6 and making the Divisional Round of the playoffs. How do the Rams take the next step as a franchise with their cap situation and NFL Draft capital? What gets them over the hump and back into Super Bowl contenders? This Rams 7-round 2021 NFL Mock Draft presents a possible solution to the franchise’s problems.
What to do about Jared Goff?
The defense found new life under DC Brandon Staley, and young offensive studs such as RB Cam Akers and WR Van Jefferson flashed late in the season. Staley has been named the Chargers’ new head coach, and OT Andrew Whitworth could retire. The most important context of the Rams’ offseason is that faith in QB Jared Goff is seemingly fading.
Ever since the Super Bowl against New England, Goff has weighed down the Rams’ offense. Coach Sean McVay can only come up with so much to make it as easy as possible for Goff. He’s just not making the plays necessary for how much money the Rams are currently paying him.
However, the 2021 NFL Draft is a poor quarterback class if you’re not picking in the top 10. Considering the Rams don’t even have a first-round pick, nabbing one of them is virtually impossible. Outside of the top four guys, none of them are really going to elevate the Rams’ passing game enough to justify taking a QB over other needs.
As such, I don’t have the Rams taking a quarterback in this Rams 7-round 2021 NFL Mock Draft.
Rams Pre-Senior Bowl 7-round 2021 NFL Mock Draft
- Round 2, Pick 57: Dylan Moses, LB, Alabama
- Round 3, Pick 88: Jordan Smith, EDGE, UAB
- Round 3, Pick 98: Spencer Brown, OT, Northern Iowa
- Round 6, Pick 185: Keith Taylor, CB, Washington
- Round 7, Pick 217: D’Wayne Eskridge, WR, Western Michigan
Rams 2021 NFL Mock Draft pick-by-pick analysis
Dylan Moses, LB, Alabama
Dylan Moses has been slipping down draft boards this season. However, the talented linebacker has reportedly been dealing with a nagging injury but remained to play through it. If so, that’s incredible considering the explosiveness on display for Moses.
This season could be attributed to the injury and position change for Moses. Alabama played him more as a MIKE than at WILL, and he was responsible for much more. This slowed his play down, as he was no longer just reading and reacting.
Linebacker is a clear problem, making it an area of emphasis in this Rams 7-round 2021 NFL Mock Draft. The linebacker play there just hasn’t been up to par seemingly since James Laurinaitis. Raheem Morris deployed Deion Jones, Foye Oluokun, and Mykal Walker creatively in Atlanta and they helped settle the defense down once he took over. Moses’s physicality and athleticism would help make a huge difference up front for the Rams. With the defensive front and Aaron Donald controlling the line of scrimmage, Moses’ athleticism and speed can help clean up the traffic in the middle, as well as cover the middle of the field in some deep zones.
Jordan Smith, EDGE, UAB
After just a single offseason, we got a picture of what Brandon Staley loves with his edge rushers — explosiveness, power, and length. Leonard Floyd, Terrell Lewis, and Justin Hollins were all added to his watch and were helpful additions to the Rams defense. However, Floyd is a free agent, and Staley is no longer the defensive coordinator. There aren’t any identifiable commonalities between what Raheem Morris likes in his pass-rushers, so taking the best available matters the most.
Length and explosion is the name of the game with Jordan Smith. He dominated the C-USA tackles off the line of scrimmage. In addition, Smith has an impressive bend to his game despite being listed at 6’7″ and 255 pounds. It was no surprise he ranked so high in pressure rating this season for UAB. He’s raw technically, but he would fit in seamlessly with the Rams, who need pass-rushing explosiveness.
Spencer Brown, OT, Northern Iowa
The Rams are in a precarious situation this offseason. Future Hall of Famer Andrew Whitworth is mulling retirement after his latest knee injury. There have been some discussions about moving right tackle Rob Havenstein for a draft pick(s) to save additional cap space.
Whether they move on from Havenstein or not, there needs to be a solution behind Whitworth, and the Rams don’t have that on their current roster. With that said, the Rams can’t wait until Day 3 in this Rams 7-round 2021 NFL Mock Draft to address the offensive line.
Enter Spencer Brown, who many analysts have compared to Lane Johnson. At a crazy 6’9″ and 321 pounds, Brown has rare athleticism seen from FCS tackles. A former tight end, his agility and quickness are at a different level than the FCS opponents he lines up against. His nastiness and toughness as a blocker are even more endearing. He’ll be a quick riser, and as a result, the Rams would be smart to grab him.
Keith Taylor, CB, Washington
With the cap situation being what it is, the Rams likely have to make some tough calls in free agency. Consequently, that means they could lose Troy Hill to free agency. I’m not sure former third-round pick David Long is the answer there, so adding additional corner depth is a wise investment in this Rams 7-round 2021 NFL Mock Draft.
Keith Taylor is a lengthy corner at 6’3″. At Washington, he was used primarily along the outside and lined up against players like Michael Pittman Jr. during his time in the PAC-12. He has the length, competitiveness, and athleticism to carve out a solid NFL career. Whether or not new DC Raheem Morris keeps the quarters-heavy look for the Rams defense or mixes in more cover-1 and cover-3 looks, the Rams need corner depth. The Rams love their Senior Bowl guys, and Taylor is another on this list.
D’Wayne Eskridge, WR, Western Michigan
The Rams don’t have a Brandin Cooks type of pass catcher on the roster anymore. The fastest threat on offense is Robert Woods. While Woods is a phenomenal player, he isn’t that deep threat archetype the Rams could use. Having that type of threat out there can help provide some much-needed explosiveness to the Rams’ offense.
Eskridge is a timed 4.33 speedster with a Senior Bowl invite of his own. For his 5’9″ and 190-pound frame, Eskridge is tough and isn’t afraid to mix it up. He finished fourth in receiving yards per game this season as one of the most exciting players in college football. Even better? Eskridge is a valuable special teamer as well. Nabbing him with the final pick in this Rams 7-round Mock Draft provides a versatile playmaker for McVay and company.
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