LA Rams can find gems on Day 2 and Day 3 of 2022 NFL draft

NFL Draft News

What do you give the person who has everything?

That’s the thinking right now in Los Angeles after the Matthew Stafford-led Rams dismantled the Chicago Bears 34-14 in the season-opener.

With Stafford, All Pro defensive tackle Aaron Donald and All Pro cornerback Jalen Ramsey in tow, Los Angeles doesn’t have many holes on its roster.

However, with no pick in the first, Los Angeles is going to have to solidify its team in the later rounds of the 2022 NFL draft. Here’s a look at Los Angeles’ picks after trading a 2022 sixth-round pick and a fourth-rounder in 2023 for New England running back Sony Michel.

  • First Round: None (traded as part of Matthew Stafford deal)
  • Second Round: Own pick
  • Third Round: Own pick plus a compensatory pick (Brad Holmes hiring)
  • Fourth Round: None of own (traded as part of Brandin Cooks deal), compensatory pick
  • Fifth Round: Own pick
  • Sixth Round: Potentially four compensatory picks
  • Seventh Round: Own pick plus pick acquired (Aqib Talib trade)

If the compensatory picks pan out, then LA will wind up with 11 draft picks – but the bulk of those picks come on Day 3 of the draft.

Need a new tackle to replace the soon-to-be-40-year-old Andrew Whitworth? Or a guard to replace free-agent-to-be Austin Corbett? What if cornerback Darious Williams signs elsewhere? And will defensive tackle A’Shawn Robinson remain with the team?

Here are three Day 2 and two Day 3 prospects in the 2022 NFL draft to keep an eye on:

Day 2 Prospects:

  • Edge Jermaine Johnson II, Florida State: The 6-foot-5, 262-pound redshirt senior was a bit of an afterthought while playing for Georgia, then vaulted up draft boards following his dominating performance against Notre Dame in Week 1, tallying seven tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss and 1.5 sacks. So what did Johnson do for an encore? How about 11 tackles, 3.5 TFLs, 2.5 sacks and 1 pass defended, albeit in a shocking loss to Jacksonville State. At this rate, Johnson won’t make it out of the first round as more evaluators are ranking him among the top 30 prospects. Dane Brugler of The Athletic recently called Johnson “one of the five-best senior DE prospects in the country.”

  • DL Perrion Winfrey, Oklahoma: Pro Football Focus listed Winfrey as the ninth-best prospect in the Big 12 prior to the season – and that ranking might be a tad low after the first two weeks of play. Winfrey has 5 tackles, 2.5 TFLs and 1.5 sacks in two games, but his 11 QB pressures leads all players in the conference. PFF says the 6-foot-4, 297 pound senior “packs a powerful punch” and “… plays from snap to whistle every play and has the kind of motor NFL evaluators will love.”

  • OT Myron Cunningham, Arkansas: The 6-foot-6, 325 pound senior has been on draft radars since last season, when many thought the former JUCO transfer would enter the draft. Instead, Cunningham elected to return and is now a big reason behind Arkansas’ resurgence. From Brugler, via Best of Arkansas Sports: “… (H)e’s just been really reliable, really solid. Good size, 6”6’ around 325 lbs, good length, really like his hand strength at the point of attack. His movements in pass protection are very controlled, doesn’t make a lot of mistakes out there. I like his awareness, the way he can pick up rushers. He’s just a steady type of player.”

Day 3 Prospects:

  • LB Mike Rose, Iowa State: Why is the 6-foot-5, 250-pound senior a Day 3 possibility after racking up 269 tackles, 31.5 TFLs, 5.5 sacks and 6 INTs in his career? Let Fansided’s NFL Mocks explain why: “The highest-rated linebacker of this group for the 2022 NFL Draft is Iowa State’s Mike Rose, who currently carries a fourth-round draft grade. What stands out about Rose is his ability to hold up in coverage having picked off five passes last year which was the most from any linebacker last year. He holds up against the run as well having led the Big 12 in tackles last year. What might hurt Rose in the draft process is that he will only post average testing numbers.”

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