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Looking Ahead: Defensive Line

With the Rams completely out of contention this season, and everyone already looking ahead to the Rams Super Bowl (also known as The NFL Draft), it is already time to take a look at where the Rams roster stands for 2012 and beyond.  Today, we are going to take a look at the defensive line.

2012 Starters:

DEs: Robert Quinn, Chris Long

DTs: Fred Robbins, [unknown]

Quinn and Long will make a dynamic combination going forward.  Fred Robbins has bounced back after a dynamic year last year.  He’s under contract for one more year and the Rams will bring him back, especially if Steve Spagnuolo is still the head coach.

2012 Backups:

At DE, James Hall is still a great rotation defensive end for the Rams going forward.  CJ Ah You has a fan in Spagnuolo and should stick around as a DT/DE pass rusher if he stays around.  Eugene Sims is a better prospect at DE than Ah You and should be better in the long term as the 4th DE.

At DT, the Rams have Justin Bannan signed to a multi-year deal.  He’s a good situational run stuffer, but I think the Rams can do better at DT for their starter. The Rams continue to wait for Darell Scott to fulfill his potential and so far he hasn’t, but he’s a decent rotational tackle at this point. Gary Gibson has had an improved year this year, but is limited at what he can do at this point of his career. He’s a Spags guy as well. Jermelle Cudjo is on IR and could be a depth DT as well with some potential.

2012 Needs:

A starter at DT is the Rams only need here, but it is glaring with the numbers opposing teams RBs have been putting up against the Rams. Aubrayo Franklin, Sione Pouha or Antonio Garay would be good fits, but at this point, I don’t know if any of them get away from their original teams.

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One Response to “Looking Ahead: Defensive Line”

  1. tyler says:

    None of the free agent names invoke any optimism on my part. They are all veterans in decline, except Pouha, who just has never filled his potential.

    I think Bannan is actually the best guy on the roster at this point and I believe we need to upgrade here in the first 3 rounds of the draft (one of our few defensive draft picks this year, the other pick being corner).

    Robbins is in serious decline, he just can’t go much longer. Scott and Gibson are both JAG’s with nothing special about either of them. Ah You and Sims could both go, but if we have to keep one let it be Sim’s. Ah You must have some photos of Spags or something, ridiculous. I belive they are both Spag-system guys, and should both be on the way out.

    Obviously Quinn and Long are the future here, and honestly it goes against what I think a new coach would do, but I would keep James Hall around. He’s a solid veteran who knows the game and can still contribute.

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