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Friday, March 9, 2012
Rams hit home run with blockbuster trade

By Mike Sando


First-year St. Louis Rams general manager Les Snead has scored a major victory six months before his first regular-season game on the job.

Acquiring three first-round picks and a second-rounder from Washington for the No. 2 overall choice looks like an absolute best-case scenario for St. Louis, in my view. The Rams lose four spots in the draft order for a chance to set up their franchise. They now hold the sixth overall choice, plus the Redskins' first-rounders in 2013 and 2014. They also get the Redskins' second-round choice this year.

The Redskins can come out OK, too, if their presumed choice with the second overall pick, Robert Griffin III, becomes a great quarterback. But the Rams had no interest in Griffin. And with Andrew Luck expected to go first overall, the Rams will most likely be drafting no worse than the fourth player on their board.

The Rams' ability to secure this package from the Redskins suggests that Washington faced or thought it faced strong competition for the choice. I think it also reinforces the Redskins' image as a team willing to mortgage the future.

That is not the Rams' problem. Their future looks much brighter. For their sake, here's hoping the Redskins don't change their minds before the trade can be executed Tuesday.

Getting value for the second overall choice should come as a relief for the Rams. The pick's value could have fluctuated as teams addressed their quarterback situations before the draft. Peyton Manning's reported reluctance to consider the Redskins might have worked in the Rams' favor for the purposes of swinging this trade so early in the process.

The Rams can now move forward with a plan to acquire playmakers and upgrade their roster overall. They have the ammunition to acquire additional picks or move up in this draft, and in future drafts. They are much better off now than before this trade.