St. Louis Rams: Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma
Bradford played college football for the Oklahoma Sooners. In 2008, as a redshirt sophomore, Bradford became the second sophomore to win a Heisman Trophy. Bradford also holds the NCAA record for touchdown passes by a freshman, with 36. He is Oklahoma's all-time passing leader.
In the Sooners' first game of the 2009 season, Bradford suffered a 3rd degree AC joint sprain. Bradford came back from that and played well but re-injured his right shoulder on October 17, 2009. He then underwent season-ending shoulder surgery.
The Rams have 10 picks and need help at quarterback, wide receiver, defensive tackle, linebacker, and defensive end.
Here is why Bradford was picked by the Rams.
Bradford had a spectacular Pro Day. Bradford connected on 62-of-63 passes. The only incompletion was a dropped ball. He made every pass that the Rams wanted to see. The shoulder has passed all the tests.
He proved that his shoulder injury is behind him.
The Rams feel that Bradford is the franchise quarterback all teams want.
Either of the top two defensive tackles could be a bust but even if they turn into Pro Bowl players, St. Louis will still be a below average football team until they upgrade the quarterback position. The most important step in any rebuilding effort is to find a long-term answer at quarterback.
The Rams cut Marc Bulger. The quarterback that now sits atop the Rams depth chart is A.J. Feeley. Unless Bradford is a total disappointment, he will soon be the starting quarterback for the Rams. They may suffer another year with Feeley but Bradford will take over by 2011.
It is increasingly difficult to win a Super Bowl playing "hide the quarterback" these days. The Jets tried it with Mark Sanchez. Defense-heavy teams like the Jets with decent quarterbacks could still contend but the passing game is more important than ever in the NFL.
The easiest path to the playoffs is through offensive continuity, which starts with a QB.
A defensive tackle or safety will not excite the city of St. Louis.
Nothing will energize a fan base like drafting the new face of the franchise. Rams fans are excited to have a potentially elite quarterback on their team. Bradford will help the Rams bring them back to the greatest show on turf years.