INDIANAPOLIS — The man of the hour at this combine is Rams general manager Billy Devaney, who spent his time with reporters Friday discussing his thoughts on holding the No. 1 overall pick in the draft.
Devaney, who openly discussed the possibility of trading the pick, said the Rams still are in the information-gathering stage and have a long ways to go in separating a group of candidates that includes DTs Ndamukong Suh and Gerald McCoy along with QBs Sam Bradford and Jimmy Clausen. Devaney also indicated that he expects safety Eric Berry to grade among the top group of players.
The Rams have yet to put final grades on the QBs, but Devaney’s mindset is if they grade out closely to the top tackles, it will make the upcoming decision difficult.
“They’re unique, they’re difference-makers, and we have them graded extremely high,” Devaney said of Suh and McCoy. “I have a feeling, that at the end of the day, the quarterbacks are going to be — if they’re not right there — they’re going to be within striking distance that you have to think about taking them.”
The health of both Bradford and Clausen certainly is an issue, and Devaney made it clear Friday that he favors intangibles at quarterback. Devaney did share that Bradford has been throwing about 50 balls per day between 20 and 40 yards and, even so, indicated that he’ll want to see the QB throw at his pro day March 25 and possibly again before the draft as the Rams do their due diligence. It also was notable to learn that the Rams have Colt McCoy listed as the third-rated quarterback, and Devaney wouldn’t be surprised if the Texas standout was a first-round pick.
– Frank Tadych