2015 Depth Charts: St. Louis Rams

| 2 years ago
STL DC

2015 Depth Charts: St. Louis Rams


STL DC

Notes

•  You suspect that whenever the Sam Bradford era comes to an end, it’s just going to be frustrating having never seen him for an extended period of time without injury. At this point it’s hard to say he’s anything other than Average when on the field.

•   Reports suggest that Greg Robinson will open the season at left tackle in 2015. He started 2014 at left guard and looked solid, but really struggled at tackle. That’s not to say he won’t improve next season, but he needs to take a big step forward to help the Rams.

•  Aaron Donald is our second Elite rookie and again it’s hard to call him anything other than that. Our highest-graded defensive tackle in 2014, he was fantastic as a pass rusher and against the run.

•  We had Alec Ogletree as Below Average last year and plenty of people disagreed and I suspect that might be the case again this year. He struggles too much in coverage, though, and for as much as he makes plenty of tackles, he missed 20 this year, the second year in a row he has been in the bottom three for missed tackle amongst 4-3 outside linebackers.

 

Team Needs

Wide Receiver: Tavon Austin hasn’t developed into the gamebreaker they had hoped and it would make a lot of sense to try and find more of a No. 1 receiver. It might be the case that they look to the draft for that again, but it’s somewhere they need to invest.

Interior Offensive Line: The untested Travis Bond would currently start at left guard, while center Scott Wells struggled last year. That adds up to a weak interior, so don’t be surprised to see them address that soon.

Quarterback: It’s continues to look more and more like Bradford won’t develop into what they need at quarterback. There doesn’t appear to be a quick fix out there in free agency, and they likely won’t have a shot at either of the top two quarterbacks in the draft, but don’t be surprised if they take a look at one of the second tier college quarterbacks in rounds 2 or 3.

 

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| Analyst, Lead Special Teams Analyst

Gordon has worked at PFF since 2011, and now heads up the company’s special teams analysis processes. His work in-season focuses on college football, while he is also heavily involved in PFF’s NFL draft coverage.

  • Riffle,Rod&Fly

    Ugggh, one of the worst looking grades at a glance They still manage to play spoiler against good teams.

    • Chris

      I’ve seen a couple with a lot more orange than that. They’re pretty average across the board with some good players here and there. A great DL helps them in a division where most teams are run-based. What they really need is OL help and for Bradford to stay healthy. Tre Mason has looked pretty good at times.

      • Riffle,Rod&Fly

        Yeah, that makes sense. I guess it was the absence of green that was really noticeable. Considering that Bradford has been injured since his before he was drafted, I have little hope of him staying healthy or staying in the league.

  • Nick

    that is surprisingly mediocre

    • Jaguars28

      How is it surprising? They went 6-10.

      • Nick

        yes but this is always the team that people say just needs a QB

  • davathon

    Good playoffs teams are created through the draft. Bad teams are created through bad drafting. The Rams are shockingly bad.

    • Jaguars28

      ^ Dolphins fan

  • cvlts

    This is the most Rams list ever

  • Josh Havlik

    I’m really starting to sour on PFF. Football is a team game, and it seems like PFF grades more on individual effort without any regard to who the opponent is. The Rams roster is better than this chart shows.

    • Gordon McGuinness

      I’m always interested by comments like these. Who do you think we’ve been harsh on here? When I was writing it up I noticed that it’s as average a starting line up as we’ve had so far, which fits nicely with how the Rams have done the past few seasons, no? They arent a bad team, but outside of Donald and Quinn (and Chris Long is he rebounds from a poor 2014), they don’t have many difference makers.

      • Josh Havlik

        It’s head scratching that a team like the Vikings (who I happen to cheer for) can have a full defense of green, while seeming rather underwhelming, while a team like St Louis can be mostly average, while playing some very good football at times this season. An ineffective offense wears down a good defense and I think that may have a lot to do with guys getting beat.

        Admittedly, I did not watch much Rams football, I’m reading boxscores and various advanced statistics websites.

        My biggest beef with PFF is certain positions grading poorly overall, while other positions seem to have scads of highly rated players. The benchmarks should move based on how other people at the position do. Just my two cents.

    • Vitor

      Everything you’ve said is true, but your conclusion of the whole thing is wrong:
      1. These depth charts analysis are made to grade the players individually.
      2. Football is a team game, and often we see (not only in football, but in other team sports) a team with “average” players beat a team full of stars.
      3. The Rams was a very tough opponent last year.
      All this doesn’t necessarily mean that, individually, the players didn’t perfome at the level you are imagining.
      I don’t get this hate that people get from the website. Looking your favorite player graded good won’t make him play better.

  • DrAWNiloc

    Looking at the talent and knowing their injury problems, it is hard to see how, in arguably the toughest division in football, the Rams have won 6, 7 and 7.5 games these last three years. The good news is that this isn’t a passing division; that backfield alone would be fatal anywhere else.

    My guess is they will ignore greater areas of need and go for skill positions, taking WR Amari Cooper or Kevin White (if available) in Round #1. I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Rams pick up QB Brett Hundley next.

  • Jaguars28

    That D-Line, man it’s insane.

    • LIMetfan22

      Jets dline is better.

      • Jaguars28

        Well, can’t argue with that.

      • Jamison Edward

        I seriously doubt that. Just my opinion though

        • Tyler Ferree

          2 Elite, 1 very good in a 3 man front, last year’s primary reserve at Nosetackle would have been at least a good grade as a starter on another team and probably will be next year. Throw in a couple solid reserve/20-30% snap players the Jets line is outright devisating.

          • Will

            Buffalo has a pretty devastating d-line as well

          • Jamison Edward

            Not saying they aren’t, but that’s the Rams D-Line. Chris Long’s last 3 healthy season 33 sacks. Quinn has 40 sacks in the last 3 years, and in the last 2 years, lead’s the league in forced fumbles (I believe)
            and then Aaron Donald, the DROY. At the least it’s a tie

  • Jordonh4

    Not even a Rams fan and this list is a joke. Quinn is not elite? Tre Mason, Laurinatis, Jenkins, Gaines, TJ and Ogletree played better than average this season. This team beat the Niners, Seahawks and Broncos will winning a game 52-0.

    • Tk Flournoy

      Thank You!!! I thought i was trippin

      • Jordonh4

        You aren’t. This guy obviously does not watch games. He has Jake Long ranked as very good? Dude allowed how many sacks in his 3 games before his 2nd ACL tear in under a year?

        • emalpark

          Couldn’t agree more. Not sure why so much hate for Ogletree. If Ogletree is bad, we can afford dozen more.

        • Dildo Baggins

          Jake Long only allowed 3 sacks (and in 7 games, not 3)… Its pretty clear who doesnt watch the games here.

          Also, going by sacks allowed as a measurement for OL is dumb.

          Quinn doesnt deserve the benefit of doubt yet. He wasnt good at all and then he exploded in 2013, before falling back to a still very high level, but not near his prior year.

          I have ZERO clue how you can possibly argue that the ratings for the rest arent fair. Laurinaitis is not that good at all. Pretty sure another film based NFL site had him as one of the worst starting LBs in the league. Janoris Jenkins makes 1 big play for every 10 that he gives up. Someone who misses 20 (!!!!!) tackles is simply not good.

          I hate how people come here and bash the rating for their favorite team without providing a single piece of “evidence” for their reasoning.

          These guys are paid by NFL teams to do this and you guys sit on your couch and watch where the ball goes.

          • Chris

            I was typing out a response to him, but I don’t think I could say it any better than this.

            +1

    • Tyler Ferree

      Mason and Gaines were rookies, small sample.

      Lauranitis, MacDonald, and Ogletree get a lot of tackles, but tackles aren’t everything.

      Jenkins had only 5 PDs and 2 picks last year and had only 1 in 2013, not making any huge impact in coverage.

    • SeattleMark

      Well, Enjoy getting smacked by the seahawks,

  • Jason Williams

    sometimes these things can be misleading. for example, tavon austin has the ability to be an elite receiver – but will that ever manifest in on field production? hard to say.

    • PackMaster

      It’s not misleading at all. Austin is a poor route runner and is short. He is a punt returner and jet sweep runner. Doesn’t have the deep ball instincts to be a vertical threat. Good with the ball in his hands but requires specially designed plays to do it. Compare with De’Anthony Thomas and Jacoby Ford.

    • Dildo Baggins

      Saying Tavon Austin has the ability to be an elite receiver is like saying Trent Richardson has the ability to be an elite RB. EVERYTHING around them would have to be perfect.

      • Jason Williams

        I have to say I think that’s a really fair comparison.

  • Jake

    This article is a joke

    • Jaguars28

      Do you happen to be Jake Long?

      • Chris

        ZING

  • John Pinkley

    It might be pretty fair across the board. But I would like to know why McDonald isn’t light green. Only adjustment maybe needed. Ogletree also was Orange no doubt early in the season. However I think it is consensus that in the second half of the season he was one of the better OLB in the league.So I think that would balance out to at least yellow!

    • Chris

      As far as Cook, you need to look at the sample size. Making the NFC-West All-Pro Team is a size of 4 teams. So he’s the best out of a division that has no good TEs (Davis had a terrible year). But that doesn’t make him above average compared to the rest of the league.

      Gaines was a pretty good in the slot, but he wasn’t even the first option in the slot on his team. That would be Joyner. Gaines played about 20% of his snaps from the slot. And one cherry-picked stat doesn’t paint the full picture. He barely graded above average in a season filled with ups and downs as a rookie. Average seems to be fair.

      And by McDonald do you mean T.J. McDonald? Who has a career -7.2 grade and 1 year as a starter under his belt? I think Average is generous.

      • cole

        Gaines wasn’t the first spot in the slot on his team because an injury to Trumaine Johnson in the preseason forced Gaines into an outside job. Joyner also struggled with injuries and Gaines’ play this year basically forced the Rams’ hand to start him in the slot when Trumaine Johnson returned.

        McDonald was a starter his rookie year until he broke his leg against the 9ers, and most of his career -7.2 grade comes from his rookie year. He played very good football as a box safety this year.

      • NW_AJ

        I’ve noticed you respond to most articles, and I just want to say I enjoy reading your comments and what you have to say. I even agree with pretty much everything you’re saying about the Rams (and I’m a die hard Rams fan). For some reason, Rams fans feel they have a team with above average players everywhere… I think that’s laughable. A 6 win team is exactly what the pff depth chart shows: average to below average mostly.

        I do, however, disagree with your T.J. McDonald view. He started off poorly, but reeeeally got better as the season went on. I think he deserves light green. During the last 10 weeks of the season, when he really started to hit his stride, he was the #2 overall graded safety on PFF. (http://i.imgur.com/t560elr.png) Now, this could just be a great stretch of games, but I lean more towards the idea that this was a taste of what his real play level is. This is also why other Rams fans are so shocked he’s not viewed as highly, since it’s easier to remember what he did the last half of the season over the first half.

        Just my thoughts, I think he’s really on the way up as a Strong Safety.

    • NW_AJ

      That link you provided for Scott Wells is from way back in July, before the season even started. Wells is terrible and deserves the red.

      The link for JL is about tackling efficiency, not overall quality of play. Just cuz he doesn’t miss that many tackles doesn’t mean he’s even close to a good LB.

      McDonald I think deserves light green, he was amazing the last bunch of weeks of the season.

      Mostly, though, you’re cherry picking certain stats that don’t tell the whole story of the player. Rams didn’t only win 6 games with above average talent, they have average to below average talent and that is reflected here appropriately.

  • Jamison Edward

    I’d say Robert Quinn is still elite. There’s no real substantial reason why he isn’t

  • cole

    Interesting that Polamalu at this point in his career is considered better than TJ McDonald. McDonald down the stretch was probably the best box safety in the game behind Chancellor. Also a little confused as to how Quinn is not elite, sure his production against the run and pass may have gone down, I don’t think it was far enough to warrant him losing the elite label. Ogletree I personally disagree with, but PFF’s explanation makes sense, so I can accept that.

  • NW_AJ

    I’m a huge Rams fan but this list reflects exactly what the Rams are and have been the past 3 years: Average at best. This is a good depth chart with very fair grades for the players. To the naysayers: you really think a team that has won (in the last 3 years) 7, 7, and 6 games to be stacked with talent? Slightly below average records reflect a slightly below average team, it’s that simple.

  • PetEng

    That offense is a joke. Worst drafting team in the NFL.

  • Andrew

    This list is hilarious. As many have stated, Olgetree and McDonald were probably top 3 at their positions the whole second half and graded out pretty good for the whole season. Also, Robert Quinn as very good? Come on now…

    Most others are probably right. I think Saffold should be in the good category. He suffered because of Center issues. Robinson is a work in progress but I think he will absolute maul next year with a full professional season under his belt. Very young and talented player.

    • Jamison Edward

      Except Jake Long. He’s average at best