Rams might be willing to make move in draft
By Nick Wagoner | ESPN.com
EARTH CITY, Mo. — This is a topic that we’ll likely explore multiple times and much more in depth in the coming weeks and months, but lost in all the discussion of things like quarterback Sam Bradford at St. Louis Rams coach Jeff Fisher’s end-of-year news conference was a seemingly innocent answer to a more loaded question.
Fisher and his staff are a long way from being prepared for this draft and there’s so much that has to play out between now and the end of April, but where Fisher usually brushes aside specific questions about the draft this far removed, he offered a little something when asked directly about the plausibility of making a move up.
“I think those are options for you,” Fisher said.
What followed was a little more telling as Fisher hinted that the Rams’ early opinion of the 2015 NFL draft is that it simply isn’t that deep in talent.
“Our decision to go ahead and trade for [safety] Mark [Barron] was not necessarily only based on Mark’s potential and his ability,” Fisher said. “It was also based on our feeling as it relates to this year’s draft and the strength of this year’s draft. All of those things are tied together. So, that kind of gives you an idea. We’ll go into draft stuff at a later time.”
Indeed, there will be plenty of time for that later on but it’s telling that Fisher was willing to volunteer that the Rams dealt fourth- and sixth-round picks for Barron in part because they don’t see a lot of value in the draft.
Now, that doesn’t mean the Rams are ready to mortgage their premium picks (rounds one through three) or future premium picks to move up for a player, but it does tell you that Fisher believes his team might be in position where it doesn’t need to stack quantity as much as it did when he took over in 2012.
Obviously, a Rams move up in most minds would include the targeting of a top quarterback. As it stands, Oregon’s Marcus Mariota and Florida State’s Jameis Winston are the primary names people believe will go in the early part of the first round at that position. The Rams hold the 10th pick in the draft and it seems unlikely either will fall to No. 10, though off-the-field questions could push Winston down further.
Being stuck at 10, the cost to move up to the top two or three to get a quarterback might be prohibitive, but based on Fisher’s response it’s clearly not something we can close the door on here in January.