During Saturday’s Combine workouts, quarterbacks, wide receivers, and tight ends donned their “NoBull” branded spandex. While only tight end is high on the Los Angeles Rams Draft needs list, they don’t have a quarterback other than Matthew Stafford on their roster. And we all know Sean McVay can’t help but draft new shiny toys. He has drafted six wide receivers in six seasons as head coach of the Rams.
Rams Draft Needs: Tight End/Wide Receiver/Quarterback
Luke Schoonmaker, Tight End, Michigan
Luke Schoonmaker had exactly the kind of combine most expected of him. Solid. That’s what he is and that is what has become the expectation for Wolverine tight ends. Just like the position in McVay’s offense, tight ends are expected to contribute as a blocker and also need to be a capable pass catchers.
Schoonmaker proved for all three years that he is a good and willing blocker. It was only last season that we learned he could also be the latter. Schoonmaker stepped into the role as a primary pass catch tight end when his counterpart Erick All sustained a season-ending back injury. Before that, he had caught just three passes in three games. After he averaged 4 catches a game at nearly 12 yards per catch in the remaining eight games.
His size and skill set are very similar to Tyler Higbee’s. They are both 6’6″ and around 250 lbs. Higbee’s college production was a good tick higher, but that was also playing outside of the Power 5.
The Rams would have to use their third-round pick to acquire Schoonmaker because he will not be around after that round.
Davis Allen, Tight End, Clemson
If the Rams draft a Higbee-esque tight end, but in the sixth round there is a chance that Davis Allen will still be around. The tight end class is deep with talent, so they could land him. He is also similar to Higbee in size, but he also has Schoonmaker’s big school pedigree.
Not to be too brief, but he’s got the stuff that Rams tight ends need to have.
Jonathan Mingo, Wide Receiver, Ole Miss
If the Rams draft Jonathan Mingo they would have to use (at least) their third-round pick. That’s a big ask for a luxury pick, but this is the Rams. You can’t put it past them.
Think of Mingo as a young, cheap Allen Robinson. Big and fast but at the same time unfortunately not quick. But he can use his size and athleticism to win contested catches. He is also a big YAC threat because of how hard he is to take down. He is also a natural blocker.
Jake Bobo, Wide Receiver, UCLA
What will work to the Rams advantage is that Jake Bobo is still flying under the radar. Somehow. He is 6’5, 215 lbs with 10-inch hands. He also played in Los Angeles, one of the largest markets in the country, and had a statistically impressive year. He caught 57 passes for 817 yards and seven touchdowns. They aren’t monster numbers but considering how much UCLA leans into the run, they are very good.
He didn’t participate in any of the official drills at the combine, but he did show off his rangy pass-catching radius on several balls thrown his way during the passing drills and also his clean footwork.
He will never be considered anything close to a burner and will need to become a better route runner and blocker to get playing time in Sean McVay’s offense. But he would be an intriguing Rams draft pick in round 6 or 7.
It is probably hard to quantify ‘clutch’, which is another reason why he doesn’t get the attention he deserves. As LAFB’s Ryan Dyrud put it, “Anytime the Bruins needed a big catch, he made that play.”
Tyson Bagent, Quarterback, Shepard University
Haven’t heard of Tyson Bagent or Shepard University. You are definitely not alone. Shepard is a public university in West Virginia that has been in operation since 1871. Bagent is the third player in school history to get a combine invite. They are a member of the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference. Over his three seasons quarterbacking the team, the Rams were a very impressive 35-7. Yes, the Shepard University mascot is a Rams (and their colors are blue and gold.) Bagent has the most career touchdown passes in Division II football with 151 and the second most in all of college football. He finished 4 touchdowns behind Case Keenum.
Not every throw he made at the combine was a dime, but there were enough that it caused people to take notice. His passes have that pop and spin that makes scouts drool. He also posted some numbers in official drills that should be taken seriously. He ran a faster 40 time than Patrick Mahomes did. His 36-inch vertical jump score puts him in the top 6 percentile of quarterbacks, his 120-inch broad jump puts him in the top 8 percentile and the rest were well above average.
Will all this translate to the NFL game? Who knows but there is a lot of good to work with. The Rams will need to add some version of a backup quarterback this off-season. They won’t likely resign any of the current free agents. Adding in the draft will go a long way to saving them some money. Luckily, it also won’t cost the Rams one of their two high draft picks either. Bagent’s stock is up after the combine, but not that much.