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NFL Expert Weighs In On Rams Draft, Sheldon Richardson and Blaine Gabbert

Evan Silva is a senior football writer for Rotoworld.com. He is also a 2001 Chaminade graduate.

The NFL Draft is only 2 short weeks away. What do you think the Rams should do? 
We asked Chaminade graduate Evan Silva, now Senior Football writer for Rotoworld.com, who also contributes to NBC Sports and ProFootballTalk.com to weigh in.

Read More: Chaminade Grad Evan Silva: Red Devil Turned Fantasy Football Guru

On the Rams offseason and their draft priorities:

"The Rams have essentially been through 1 1/2 offseasons under the current regime. I think GM Les Snead, coach Jeff Fisher, and VP of Football Operations Kevin Demoff have done a terrific job of improving the roster. They inherited a team that arguably possessed the least talent in football. You could now argue that the Rams are into the teens in terms of top-to-bottom roster talent, and it's been upgraded in an impressively brief amount of time. They are on the right track.

Letting Danny Amendola and Steven Jackson walk in favor of signing Jared Cook and increasing the roles of guys like Isaiah Pead, Daryl Richardson, Chris Givens, and Brian Quick signals an attempt by the Rams to create bigger plays on offense. As good of ballplayers as Amendola and Jackson were, they don't really offer big-play ability. They're chain movers. Amendola averages 8.8 yards per catch in his career. Cook averages 13.1. Givens averaged 16.6 as a rookie. Jackson averaged 4.1 yards per carry in 2012. Richardson and Pead combined to average 4.9. 

The Rams want to get the ball outside the numbers and downfield, and they want more explosive "splash" plays in the run game. They now have pieces to do that. They also need better offensive line play to give those players more space on the field, and that's why they signed Jake Long.

I think they will continue to promote that philosophy on draft day. I think if West Virginia's Tavon Austin is available at the 16th pick, they'll sprint to turn in their draft card."

What's the most likely destination for Mizzou's Sheldon Richardson and T.J. Moe? Will Blaine Gabbert turn it around?

Richardson is a one-gap penetrating defensive tackle who was nimble, agile, and light on his feet enough to drop into zone coverage at Mizzou. He is a freak athlete for his position. I think he will be a top-20 selection. The Panthers at No. 14 and Cowboys at No. 18 are likely destinations.

Moe ran a forty time in the 4.7s at the Combine, which is going to hurt him in the draft. He'll probably be a late pick or undrafted free agent. But Moe has some Wes Welker to his game as a slot receiver prospect with tremendous quickness. He is quicker than fast. Moe's 3.96-second short shuttle time was the fastest among receivers at the Combine, which tells you how well he moves in a short area. I think he could help a team as a slot receiver and on special teams.

I'm concerned about Gabbert. His performance tanks with bodies around him in the pocket, and there have been whispers in Jacksonville that he doesn't have a great attitude. That he's entitled and lacks leadership qualities. Gabbert is still only 23 years old, so perhaps he'll turn it around. But I don't think he'll turn it around in Jacksonville. Maybe with another team down the road.

 

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