St. Louis Rams' Wish List: 5 Top Free Agents Who Fit the System
The St. Louis Rams have a lot of holes in their roster. New head coach Jeff Fisher plans to turn this 2-14 team around in a hurry as he brings his physical, hard-nosed brand of football to St. Louis.
So what kind of players will Fisher be looking for? What are the Rams' needs?
The Rams need playmakers on offense, specifically at the wide receiver position. They also need upgrades on the offensive line, at defensive tackle and in the secondary. Help can be found in the draft, where the Rams hold the No. 2 selection overall, and they should get some players back that missed all of 2011 due to injury (Danny Amendola, Ron Bartell, Jerome Murphy, etc).
So who do the Rams need to target in free agency? Here are five players I think St. Louis should go after...
5. Courtland Finnegan, CB, Tennessee
Courtland Finnegan is a dirty player. Throw out all the stats. The only number that matters with Finnegan is "number of NFL wide receivers that want to fight him."
Answer: All of Them.
Finnegan the guy who "you hate him if he's on the other team, but you love him if he's on your team." You know that guy don't you? We all played with a guy like that, right?
Finnegan is that guy. The Rams need that guy. Finnegan played for Fisher in Tennessee, and I personally think a reunion in St. Louis is in order. Finnegan would bring an edge to the Rams' D that they are currently lacking.
Let's make this happen. Bring Courtland Finnegan to St. Louis.
4. Dan Connor, LB, Carolina
Carolina has a surplus at the linebacker position. The Rams' have a glaring weakness at the linebacker position. Carolina won't be able to match what Dan Connor will get on the open market.
Do the math, and Dan Connor will have a new logo on his football helmet next year.
Will he play for the Rams? That depends on a couple of things. One, will the Rams find some linebackers they like in the draft? Two, does Connor fit into Jeff Fisher's defensive scheme.
The Rams need to really upgrade this position, and Dan Connor fills a need. The Rams should make this happen and sign Dan Connor.
3. Dwayne Bowe, WR, Kansas City
Dwayne Bowe is a stud at the wide receiver position. He plays for a dysfunctional franchise, and he plays with a sub par QB. The Chiefs will surely want to keep Bowe, but in my opinion, Bowe should take a hard look at the situation in St. Louis.
One, he would be playing with a much better QB in Sam Bradford, a QB he could grow old with. Two, he would also become the best wide receiver Jeff Fisher has ever coached.
Simply put, Bowe would be featured in St. Louis, and he could be a star if he signed with the Rams. However, the Rams should call another wide receiver first.
2. DeSean Jackson, WR, Philadelphia
DeSean Jackson is a walking contradiction. He is a playmaker and a problem child. He is lightning in a bottle and a Prima Donna. He has tremendous talent, but is he worth the headache?
That is the question the Philadelphia Eagles have to ask themselves.
If the Eagles let Jackson walk, the Rams should pounce all over him. He would be a dynamic player on special teams, a deep threat on offense and he would keep defenses from loading the box against Steven Jackson.
How can you bring the safeties up when Jackson is lined up at receiver?
Jackson is immature, but he is only 25 years old. He is vastly underpaid, and he knows it as evidenced by his complaints. Hey it happens in the NFL, I don't think Jackson is a bad guy at all. I'd be surprised if the Eagles let him get away to be honest with you.
If they do, the Rams shouldn't hesitate. DeSean Jackson is an elite talent.
1. Jermichael Finley, TE, Green Bay
Every good QB in the NFL has a good tight end. If we honestly expect Sam Bradford to take that next step, we need to find him a good TE. Jermichael Finley has the talent to be one of the best in the NFL.
If the Packers are stupid enough to let Finely get away, then the Rams should CTC (Cut the Check).
This isn't as far fetched as it sounds. The Packers. like most elite teams, will have several tough decisions to make, and there are going to be "cap casualties." They just have so many good players that they simply won't be able to keep them all.
If Rams rookie tight end Lance Kendricks lives up to his draft status in 2012, the Rams might be able to create the two tight end matchup nightmares that the Patriots have used with Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez.
On the other hand, if Kendricks is indeed a bust, Bradford would still have the elite tight end he needs to move forward with his career.
If I were running the Rams, Jermichael Finely would be my No. 1 target.