With the recent move from St. Louis to their native Los Angeles, the Rams certainly had desire to create some buzz for their new (and old) fans to latch onto. While their decision to sell the farm in exchange for the Titans' first overall pick in the 2016 draft will certainly get people talking, history will dictate it as a colossal mistake. In fact, it recently did when the Rams were on the winning end of a similar deal, in the form of the RGIII trade that occurred in 2012.
One could make an argument that due to the requirements for a successful team in the modern NFL game, that a "can't miss" QB prospect may be worth an outrageous deal, laden with future draft picks. But that is only the case for someone with the caliber of Andrew Luck, who is a generational QB talent, and has the skill set to completely turn around a team by day one. North Dakota State's Carson Wentz and California's Jared Goff likely won't fit that bill, and the Rams will have explain why they made this impending catastrophe of a trade in several years.
It's a move that reeks of desperation, not only to save Jeff Fisher's job, but to present a shiny new toy to the Los Angeles fanbase immediately, instead of buying time to get a truly effective prospect at the QB position. Of course, there are obviously no guarantees in the NFL draft, but there is such a thing as well-calculated risk. That is not the case here, and this trade has the potential to set the Rams' franchise even further backwards than it was during the latter part of its tenure in St. Louis.
Ranked below are the top 15 reasons the Los Angeles Rams shouldn't have traded for the 1st overall pick.
15 They Have Nick Foles
14 They Have Limited Skill Players
Other than young RB phenom Todd Gurley, the Rams are sorely lacking any play-making ability on their offense. Tavon Austin is the one closest to anything of the sort, but his small frame at 5-foot-8, 176 pounds doesn't lend itself to anything more than a utility weapon. Besides him, they're looking at the underwhelming likes of WRs Kenny Britt, Stedman Bailey and Brian Quick. As mentioned, Gurley is a definite three-down back, but Benny Cunningham and Tre Mason aren't providing a good change of pace, and haven't shown to be a pass-catching threat out of the backfield.
13 They Don't Have A Good Offensive Line
It would also probably be a sound idea for the Rams to shore up the poor offensive line that currently resides on their roster. Pro Football Focus had the group ranked 28th overall, in large part due to the struggles of second-year tackle Greg Robinson. Jeff Fisher claims that the team wants to build up the unit through the draft, and while they still could do that, taking a QB in the first round makes that much less of a successful probability.
12 They Play In A Difficult Division
11 A Franchise QB Does Not Guarantee Success
10 Jeff Fisher Has More To Lose
9 They Will Need Those Draft Picks
8 They Could Have Added Defensive Pieces
7 Overcompensating For The New Fanbase Won't Work
6 They Have Todd Gurley
5 Next Year's QB Class Is Better Than This One
4 The Herschel Walker Trade Failed For The Vikings
3 The RGIII Trade Failed For The Redskins
That's right, the Rams organization has literally been a part of essentially the same deal that spelled disaster for the Redskins when they sold the farm to the Rams for Robert Griffin III in 2012. Since one productive rookie season for Griffin, he has been first benched, then released into QB hell in Cleveland. While the 'Skins were able to salvage a division title last season, that was more a situation of injuries and controversy plaguing the rest of the division, than it was of them fielding a talented team, as evidenced by the trouncing they received at home by the Packers in the Wild Card round. Oh, and it wasn't RG3 leading the way, it was 4th round pick Kirk Cousins.
2 There Are Plenty Of Quality Prospects At 15th Overall
The bottom line is that the Rams could upgrade their team at 15th overall, by actually making the right selection. There's no need to trade away all of those draft picks when they could upgrade a valuable position where they originally stood in the draft. I've already mentioned CB Eli Apple and LB Reggie Ragland, but how about WR Laquon Treadwell from Ole Miss? Depth at DT with the departure of Nick Fairley may not be a bad idea either, and Sheldon Rankins could be on the board by then as well.
1 Wentz And Goff Won't Live Up To The Hype
In today's NFL, it's no secret that the QB position is considered essential for success. As a result, the position has become increasingly valued over the past decade or so to the point where some marginal talents are being completely overrated into a sphere they simply don't belong in. I have reservations about how good both Wentz, who went to an FCS school that was already good without him, and Goff will be in the pro game at any draft position; but trading up for them is completely asinine.
Even at their ceilings, I don't see either prospect, while certainly capable starters in the NFL, being able to live up to a number one overall selection. Again, it's one thing to select one in the first round straight up, but it's another to potentially cripple the future of your team by giving multiple key draft picks over several years. If it was Andrew Luck it would be one thing, but Goff is a toss up and Wentz hasn't even been on the field against pro caliber players. Ultimately, the Rams have made a move that is bound to happen every so often in the modern game, but that doesn't make it any smarter of a move. They're playing with fire with this decision, and I expect it to hurt, more than help their cause.
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