2011 NFL Draft: Could the Rams Look at Kyle Rudolph at 14th Overall?

Casey CrailCorrespondent IApril 14, 2011

SOUTH BEND, IN - OCTOBER 03: Kyle Rudolph #9 of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish runs onto the field with teammates before a game against the Washington Huskies on October 3, 2009 at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend, Indiana. Notre Dame defeated Washington 37-30 in overtime. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Todd McShay, alongside two unnamed NFL scouts, put together a mock draft yesterday.

There were some surprising picks like Julio Jones to the Titans at eight, but none came to more of a surprise then St. Louis selecting Kyle Rudolph at 14th.

Though this selection can be justified from a need standpoint to get a dynamic receiver for Sam Bradford, Rudolph is a reach here.

With Jones and A.J. Green being this year's top receivers, they are likely to be off the board by 14. However, Dez Bryant did drop to Dallas at 24th overall last April.

If neither receiver is on the board, most mocks have the Rams looking defense, in particular the defensive line.

Illinois tackle, Corey Liuget, is often the pick with variations of ends including Aldon Smith from Missouri.

Either player would be a solid selection to bolster the line led by Chris Long.

However, reaching on a tight end would not be a great pick with valuable receivers that can be found in the second and third rounds, respectively.

Leonard Hankerson from Miami and Vincent Brown from San Diego State could be day two targets for St. Louis.

Though it is possible for the Rams to take Rudolph at 14 and then either Hankerson or Brown in rounds two or three, there are still needs for this football team.

Despite rapid improvement led by Sam Bradford, receiving targets were not the only thing lacking.

Also, Michael Hoomanawanui shined at times as a rookie and could blossom into a good player at the tight end position.

Kyle Rudolph is an extremely talented tight end whose stock was plagued earlier this offseason due to durability concerns. Following an excellent pro day, he may have landed himself back into the first round.

However, 14th overall would be a reach, and with too many other needs, as well as valuable targets available in later rounds, the St. Louis Rams should not select him.