I was just looking this up, and noticed something that makes me both cringe and laugh at the St. Louis Rams. In the 2008 NFL Draft, the top three picks went like this:
1. Miami Dolphins
2. St. Louis Rams
3. Atlanta Falcons
One of the biggest draft mistakes in the last five years happened right here. With the first overall selection, the Miami Dolphins went with OT Jake Long, a good pick in my opinion because of his ability to both block for the pass and the run.
What happened next is the mistake.
With the Rams on the clock, the team had pressing needs at quarterback and defensive line. Deliberating between the two of them, St. Louis decided to pick Chris Long, leaving Matt Ryan available for the Atlanta Falcons to pick up at No. 3.
Looking back at that draft, let's see how the second and third picks match up.
So far in his almost two-year career, Long's played 29 games and has 59 solo tackles, 17 assists, 76 total tackles, eight sacks, zero interceptions, and one forced fumble.
Those are decent stats, but not when you compare them to Matt Ryan's.
In the same time frame, here are the quarterback numbers of Ryan:
27 games, 84.3 QB rating, 471-781 comp-att, 60.3 completion percentage, 5,731 yards, 32 touchdowns, 23 interceptions, 82 rushes, 152 rushing yards, and two rushing touchdowns.
It just doesn't look like the Rams made the right move, especially with their dire need for a quarterback these days.
The Rams made a big mistake going for Long when Ryan was still available. Even though the Falcons' quarterback hasn't put up amazing stats, he has still lead Atlanta to the playoffs and had very solid numbers every game.
The same cannot be said for Chris Long.