Greg Gaines

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swmizzou83

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Is he the answer at NT or are we still looking for a starter at that position?
 

OldSchool

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Most around here will say if a rookie doesn't come in and play good his first year he's not going to be good and needs to be replaced. Generally speaking rookies need a year or two to get upto the level of a quality NFL starter. I think he and Sebastian Joesph-Day (along with Fox) will be the starters along with AD along the front 3 this year and depth will be drafted.
 

flv

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Rodney McLeod didn't play defense in his rookie season. In Year 2 he became a bottom-end of the league starter that we wanted replaced. In Years 3 & 4 he played like a top-end starter.

Expecting Gaines to replace and exceed Suh as a rookie was a pipe dream. It's unrealistic to expect Gaines to be a decent starter in Year 2. It could happen but he's not 'Plan A' at this point. I expect to see multiple defensive front 7 picks in this year's Rams Draft. We all hope the best for Gaines but for all we know he could be the next Franklin-Myers.
 

RamDino

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I do expect Gaines to be a decent starter in year 2. However, the Rams still need more big bodies on the D-line, and hopefully they get one or two via the draft or free agency.
 
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fearsomefour

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Could be.
I prefer a true DL rotation however. Hard to accomplish in this day and age.
I’m still using that top pick this year for a playmaker to team with Donald.
Joseph-Day really developed and was quite good most of the year. He can be penciled in to get a lot of snaps this year.
Rams need another play maker up front.
Shelby Harris from Denver I would love to sign but isn’t realistic given his likely salary.
 
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Psycho_X

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DT is a hard position for rookies to come in and play just because it’s so dependent on strength especially when you’re being counted on as a run stopper. I thought he did good for a rookie there. Obvious improvement needed but promising. If he takes his conditioning and strength building serious in his off time I have high hopes for him manning the middle of the line for years to come.
 

Dodgersrf

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Most around here will say if a rookie doesn't come in and play good his first year he's not going to be good and needs to be replaced. Generally speaking rookies need a year or two to get upto the level of a quality NFL starter. I think he and Sebastian Joesph-Day (along with Fox) will be the starters along with AD along the front 3 this year and depth will be drafted.
I think the position plays a factor as well.
I think people expect more out of a RB than a QB in year one, for example.

It's also not uncommon for a rookie D lineman to play well from year one.
D. Farr was a guy that came in undrafted and played well from day one.
C. Long was a high pick, but started slow.
You never know
 

OldSchool

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I think the position plays a factor as well.
I think people expect more out of a RB than a QB in year one, for example.

It's also not uncommon for a rookie D lineman to play well from year one.
D. Farr was a guy that came in undrafted and played well from day one.
C. Long was a high pick, but started slow.
You never know
Actually Farr started 3 games only p,aged in 10 and had 11 tackles 1 sack. Year 2 he played a full 16 and had 11.5 sacks. He’s another prime example with McLeod on patience pays off sometimes.

But yes there isn’t one cookie cutter mold for rookie expectations. Generally speaking you see what a guy is after three years because even if he succeeds year one doesn’t mean he’ll grow or sustain it.
 

Dodgersrf

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Actually Farr started 3 games only p,aged in 10 and had 11 tackles 1 sack. Year 2 he played a full 16 and had 11.5 sacks. He’s another prime example with McLeod on patience pays off sometimes.

But yes there isn’t one cookie cutter mold for rookie expectations. Generally speaking you see what a guy is after three years because even if he succeeds year one doesn’t mean he’ll grow or sustain it.
People still didnt like him after he was playing well. Lol
It wasnt until his final year under contract, when the stigma wore off.
 
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Rams43

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Like flv, I foresee numerous picks/FA’s for our front 7.

I mean, that’s where most of the question marks are for me. Not to mention the possible loss of both Fowler and Littleton.

Yeah, there are a handful of front 7 players already on this roster that seem to have potential, but none have fully convinced me just yet that they are gonna be quality starters.
 

WestCoastRam

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Most around here will say if a rookie doesn't come in and play good his first year he's not going to be good and needs to be replaced. Generally speaking rookies need a year or two to get upto the level of a quality NFL starter. I think he and Sebastian Joesph-Day (along with Fox) will be the starters along with AD along the front 3 this year and depth will be drafted.
I think some of us can get a little lost in generalities around here. I do think there's some correlation with some positions when it comes to success long term and success right out of the gate.

For instance, it seems generally viewed that at TE, it's rare that eventually successful TE's are amazing right out of the gate. However, there does seem to be a correlation between RBs initial success and their success long term. Of course, there are also exceptions to the rule (see Derrick Henry).

As far as DL goes, I'm curious, how many stars or even above average starters have initial success right out of the gate? This seems like one position where it may take a few years unless you're the rare superstar. It would seem to me that DL and OL are the two positions that benefit most from a full year in the NFL weight room too.
 

Ram65

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Gaines wasn't activated in many games early in the year. He played every game from game 9 on except game 10.The Rams will have to replace Brockers so they probably won't draft a NT early in this year's draft. I see him getting more playing time this year helping keep the defensive line fresh. It's not out of the question that he gets equal or more PT that SJD. Gaines just seems like he will make a difference at some point. It could be this year.
 

BonifayRam

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Is he the answer at NT or are we still looking for a starter at that position?
Reference the question on the NT position.... Snead has been utilizing third day draft selections on the NT post for the last three years. All 3 DL'ers are under contract.

#1]-2017/6th rd.> Tanzel Smart 6-1/300 25yrs/4th season{31gms 4 starts}
#2]-2018/6th rd.> S. Joseph-Day 6-4/310 24 yrs/3rd season{16gms 15 starts}.
#3]-2019/4th rd.> Greg Gaines 6-1/315 lbs 23 yrs/2nd season{10 gms}

Rams have 2 DL'ers involved in FA'cy in March (5 tech UFA/Brockers & 5 tech RFA/ Morgan Fox 6-3 275lbs 25 yd old entering his 4th season. Brockers has played the NT post the last 3 seasons at times.

Fox's chance to return is much more realistic being just an RFA. Fox has been under contract with the Rams since 2016. Rams might decide Fox brings good experience & value on that low end tender $$ offer. Fox has 36 NFL gms experience & 4 starts under his belt as a Ram.

Snead also has some other possible DL prospects under contract in Marquise Copeland 6-2/287 & 6-4/265 Justin Lawler (both entering their 2nd seasons in LA) Lawler was drafted by Snead in 2018. Both of these Ram DL'ers fit much more the DE 5 tech post than NT.

I do not see any need to utilize any of the few priceless draft selections on the NT post If there is a necessity for additional talent to be added into this DL cadre ...its @ the DE/5 tech post.

I do not expect Snead to indulge in the Free Agency time period involving the DL except for his own signing of RFA Fox. Once the FA'cy period has concluded after the draft, Snead would then gear up searching for salary cap casualties cut NT/DT/DE's due to salary cap casualties & late pre-season releases.
 
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OldSchool

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I think some of us can get a little lost in generalities around here. I do think there's some correlation with some positions when it comes to success long term and success right out of the gate.

For instance, it seems generally viewed that at TE, it's rare that eventually successful TE's are amazing right out of the gate. However, there does seem to be a correlation between RBs initial success and their success long term. Of course, there are also exceptions to the rule (see Derrick Henry).

As far as DL goes, I'm curious, how many stars or even above average starters have initial success right out of the gate? This seems like one position where it may take a few years unless you're the rare superstar. It would seem to me that DL and OL are the two positions that benefit most from a full year in the NFL weight room too.
I would also add that imo the DLine is easier to get up to speed faster because they rotate in for downs or series in their rookie years. You don’t see olines swapping in and out for the same things. The best they can usually do is preseason games and maybe special teams.
 

Riverumbbq

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Could be.
I prefer a true DL rotation however. Hard to accomplish in this day and age.
I’m still using that top pick this year for a playmaker to team with Donald.
Joseph-Day really developed and was quite good most of the year. He can be penciled in to get a lot of snaps this year.
Rams need another play maker up front.
Shelby Harris from Denver I would love to sign but isn’t realistic given his likely salary.
I tend to agree with this. When we look at our new DC Brandon Staley and his background with Denver where they have been playing a bit more traditional 3-4 than Wade Phillips' hybrid, the difference in rotation is also more pronounced as they possess and are deep in 5T personnel where we are not. In the last 3 years the Broncos have drafted a 5T in either the 1'st, 2'nd or 3'rd round. They also employ a big NT in 328lb. Mike Purcell. During the same time span, the Rams have drafted one 5T DE, that being John Franklin-Myers in the 4'th round who lasted all of one year and is now a deep reserve for the Jets and never received a snap last season. Brockers was always out of place playing at 5T, the same will likely be true of SJD if he's expected to do the same, and both he and Gaines were initially brought in as interior DT's. In the absence of a quality 5T who can get after the QB from a DE position, the Rams have relied on smaller Edge OLB'ers to bring the pressure, especially since Donald is double & triple teamed on near every play. Donald will be 29 next season, it would be great if we can find him some relief in another Defensive Lineman or two who might take up some of those double teams and provide additional QB pressure. In the likely event that Fowler departs in free agency, the Rams appear to have depth with their remaining OLB's, but other than Morgan Fox, who will we have at 5T ? Or are we expecting Staley to adopt more of Wade's scheme over Fanzio's ?
jmo.
 

Merlin

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Rams depth chart at NT is solid. SJD did a lot of good things in his first year of starting for us. Wasn't perfect but he got the job done in a lot of games. Gaines came on late and played well in small sample size too. Those two in rotation aren't elite but will get the job done. That's a good place to be going into a draft, where you don't have to reach but can improve the position if someone you like drops to you.

The glaring need is at 5T. Rams gonna address that via FA or the draft for sure. If they add someone there that can threaten blocking schemes all of a sudden the NT position looks a lot better. Armstead for example (free agent) or Raekwon Davis (draft) sliding in at 5T for us would upgrade that position and give us better strong side defense vs the run and also some push in the passing game opposite AD.