Monday, May 21, 2012

32 in 32: Saint Louis Rams

I am having a lot of trouble thinking of any Rams to get excited about. The defense might be the strongest part of this team, as far as fantasy is concerned, but they only gain real value with an offense that can move the ball and keep them off the field. Josh Brown is a great kicker, too, but I am far from convinced about his ability to get into field goal range. These two selections could be great waiver wire pick-ups, but they really aren't worth drafting in most leagues.

Steven Jackson is easily the most valuable offensive piece on this team, but his injury history is getting scary. Where do I draft a back who I only expect to play 14 games each season? That is the kind of problem facing owners who come up with Jackson still on the board. He has slowed down a little bit, but was still given given significant touches throughout the season. His saving grace is that he tends to catch passes out of the backfield, which will likely be necessary since the receiving corps for the Rams is full of question marks. He should be a solid RB2 in most leagues.

Sam Bradford really needs some help on offense before we know how good he really is. For his sake, I really hope he has a nice season this year, but I still don't know who he is going to throw the ball to. He is a great value pick for teams who grab a great quarterback early in the draft, and might have some trade value if he makes a significant jump from last season. We have to hope that his injuries from last season stay in the past.

If you want to know how badly this group of receivers really was last season, consider the following. Steven Jackson had 42 catches last season. That is more than any receiver currently on this roster. The Rams do get Danny Amendola back after he had two bad injuries last season, but we'll have to wait and see if he can stay healthy. The rookies, Chris Givens and Brian Quick, are complete wild-cards. There is no real way for us to judge how well a rookie receiver will play, but they have as good a shot as any other Rams receiver to make a difference. The Rams also brought in former Giants and Eagles receiver, Steve Smith. This guy might be worth a pick since he is a veteran and only 27 years old. He is the most likely receiver to have a big season, but his recent history does not instill confidence. I would be willing to take a risk on him late in the draft. Amazingly, their options at tight end are even weaker. Unless I see something special in preseason, I'm not even going to bother listing those guys. Consider Lance Kendricks an extremely deep tight end option.

For the sake of all the Rams fans out there, I hope this is one of those teams that is worse in fantasy than they are in real life.

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