Five takeaways from the Rams’ 2021 draft

Louisville wide receiver Tutu Atwell (1) during the first half of an NCAA college football game in Louisville, Ky..

The Rams picked Louisville pass receiver Tutu Atwell with their very first choice in the NFL draft on Friday. Is Atwell the next Tavon Austin for the Rams? (Timothy D. Easley / Associated Press)

The Rams, without a first-round choice for the 5th successive year, chosen 9 gamers in the NFL draft, 4 on offense and 5 on defense.

Here are 5 takeaways from the Rams’ 2021 draft:

1. Coach Sean McVay desired another weapon

The Rams entered into the draft having actually traded for veteran quarterback Matthew Stafford, and after that including veteran deep-threat receiver DeSean Jackson to a position group that consists of Robert Woods, Cooper Kupp and Van Jefferson.

Then they utilized their very first choice — in the 2nd round — to choose Louisville receiver Tutu Atwell, a little, rapid gamer who can extend a defense vertically on deep paths and horizontally on fly sweeps.

Atwell may end up being precisely what the Rams’ offense requires to produce larger plays. He likewise is something of a deep-threat insurance coverage need to Jackson suffer injuries as he did the last 2 seasons.

However for some Rams fans, the choice conjured pictures of Tavon Austin, who basic supervisor Les Snead prepared with the 8th total choice in 2013. Austin had efficient seasons in St. Louis, however McVay released him generally as a decoy in 2017 prior to trading him to the Dallas Cowboys.

2. The Rams believe the offending line is great… in the meantime

After preparing just one offending lineman in 2015 — Tremayne Anchrum in the seventh round — Snead did not choose one this year.

Regardless of the departure of center Austin Blythe, the Rams stood pat. McVay as soon as again stated that Brian Allen or Coleman Shelton might manage that function.

However Allen has actually not played given that the very first part of the 2019 season after going through knee surgical treatment. And what of structure for the future?

Left take on Andrew Whitworth will turn 40 this season. Allen, Joe Noteboom, Austin Corbett and Coleman Shelton remain in the last years of their agreements.

3. Supports showing up for the protective front

South Carolina linebacker Ernest Jones chases after a play.

South Carolina linebacker Ernest Jones might play an important function in the Rams’ pass enter the seasons ahead. (Mark Humphrey / Associated Press)

New protective organizer Raheem Morris has 4 brand-new gamers to work into the lineup or rotation, which might assist fill deep space left by the departures of linemen Michael Brockers and Morgan Fox and linebacker Samson Ebukam.

The Rams picked South Carolina linebacker Ernest Jones in the 3rd round. Jones signs up with a position group that includes 3 gamers — Micah Kiser, Kenny Young and Troy Reeder — in the last year of their agreements.

Tackle Bobby Brown III, a fourth-round choice, and end Earnest Brown IV will provide protective line coach Eric Henderson 2 gamers to establish and produce depth. Edge rush Chris Garrett is out to show the abilities he utilized to set records at Department II Concordia-St. Paul will equate to the NFL.

4. The secondary obviously was not of main issue

Cornerback Troy Hill and security John Johnson left the Rams after last season by means of totally free company. Cornerback Darious Williams is an unlimited totally free representative after this season. Security Terrell Citizen is coming off ankle surgical treatment that ended his novice season.

However the Rams prepared just one defensive back — Main Arkansas cornerback Robert Rochell.

All-Pro Jalen Ramsey and Williams are the beginning cornerbacks. Third-year professional David Long, Rochell and, possibly the flexible Citizen, are amongst the gamers who will complete to change Hill as a slot cornerback.

Jordan Fuller, Taylor Rapp, Nick Scott and Citizen are the securities.

5. New unique groups organizer Joe DeCamillis had a say

Rochell, receiver Jacob Harris, running back Jake Funk and receiver Ben Skowronek were chosen with an eye on how they may contribute on unique groups.

Atwell returned just 4 kicks at Louisville, however he likewise looks like a prospect for a possible function as a kick returner.

The 6-foot-5 Harris and 6-3 Skowronek appear on track for possible hybrid functions in the offense. Harris stated he spoke mostly with Rams tight ends coach Wes Phillips prior to the draft.

This story initially appeared in Los Angeles Times.

Jobber Wiki author Frank Long contributed to this report.