Rams Prove Taking RB Late Is Great

December 21st, 2013

Rookie Zac Stacy has done what many third-day draft picks have done before him

Joe is banging on his keyboard at a McDonald’s in overcast, dreary southern Illinois, making a pit stop to his old stomping grounds before Sunday’s game.

It is the first time Joe has seen winter in these parts in 15 years. Joe prefers the warmth of Florida winters. (Joe landed in St. Louis and it was 68 degrees. Five days before Christmas! An hour later, typical of Midwest weather, a front moved in and the temperature dropped like 15 degrees. Now Joe knows why he packed winter apparel).

The current weather fits the moods of Rams fans. From a distance, Joe always thought it was criminal how the Rams drafted a quarterback first overall and never give him a decent weapons to work with. Just how does any team expect a quarterback to develop when he has slugs to throw to?

The Rams did, however, pick up where they left off after not re-signing Steven Jackson (who in all his qualities years in the NFL has never played on a winning team. Think about that for a moment). If the fifth round last year, the Rams drafted running back Zac Stacey, who burst on the scene in October and is really the Rams’ lone weapon that strikes fear into opponents’ hearts.

Kellen Clemens couldn’t scare a cockroach.

Stacy averages over six yards a carry and has nearly single-handedly put the Rams offense on his shoulders since quarterback Sam Bradford blew out his knee.

“I liked him,” Bucs coach Greg Schiano said of Stacy when he came out of college this past offseason. “We liked him as an organization. He’s a downhill runner and physical, uses his height to his advantage. He has a low center of gravity and he pushes the ball north and south, he’s not looking to run 30 yard runs, although they come, he’s looking to get three or four and then the 30 come off that.”

Joe hopes somehow the Bucs bottle up Stacy and dare Clemens to try to beat the likes of Darrelle Revis, Dashon Goldson, Mark Barron (if he plays) and Johnthan Banks with inferior receivers.

This once again demonstrates what Joe has written time and again for years: Teams can hit home runs drafting running backs late almost as easy as drafting running backs early, for a whole lot less cost.

12 Responses to “Rams Prove Taking RB Late Is Great”

  1. Buc1987 Says:

    LOL Joe. You just gave me flashbacks of driving to St Louis from Florida straight through only to land in downtown at 6:30 in the a.m. on no sleep. I got stuck on all those one way streets trying to find my way out of the city to my motel. That was many years ago, prior to the GPS being invented. It was hell. I hated that city and I punished my dashboard for it, by pounding on it left and right out of frustration. That city has so many damn one-way streets I almost wanted to cry. Have fun Joe.

  2. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    We proved you don’t have to draft a RB high…with Jame & Rainey…but I would trade Martin for anyone.
    Drafting all the skill positions is a crapshoot….

  3. RObbie_G Says:

    Joe right on the money. The RB is so devalued in the modern NFL, and you NEED to draft qb, de, cb, or O line in the first 2 rounds. Look at all the good or serviceable backs drafted late recently, Alfred Morris, Stacy, even our own Mike James. Don get me wrong, I like Douggie, but could you imagine them taking Janoris Jenkins or Alshon Jeffery instead?

  4. Chef Paul Says:

    I fully agree that RB’s should be drafted late. I love Doug, but I hated that pick. Running Backs are a dime a dozen. The Oline is what butters the running games bread. There are very few exceptions. Adrian Peterson, Barry Sanders, Walter Payton are exceptions to the rule. Not to take anything away from Emmit Smith but even he wouldn’t have been what he was without that Oline. Larry Allen could bench press a fully loaded bus for crying out loud.

  5. Chris Says:

    90% of rbs never see a 2nd contract. I like Doug as well but with with a good oline and a solid back you win championships. You have to be able to run the football but 2 back system is the way to go.

    Look at ray rice. 2nd year into his new deal and you can already see his wear and tear.

  6. Bucballya Says:

    And when you consider that running back’s have the shortest NFL career on avg., it makes even more sense to take a shot on the position in the lower rounds. Also, I’m pretty sure that quote from Schiano was supposed to read-“He’s looking for three or four, and then the THIRTY come’s off of that.”

  7. Couch Fan Says:

    This is the Bucs were talking about. We are lucky if we draft a good player in any round. I for one and dam sure not gonna nit pick which rounds we drafted what. Just be a good player if we draft you.

  8. chef paul Says:

    That’s a fair point couch

  9. bigpoppabuc Says:

    Do not put Rainey into that group. He’s not as good as his numbers. James is a solid number two, but don’t give up on Dougie guys. Dude injured his shoulder, not his knees.
    Martin is a great back and will bounce back next season as long as we fix our woes in the trenches. But I agree with the opinion that you don’t need to draft RBs high. Remember when draft geeks were all about Trent Richardson coming to Tampa. And I remember quite a few fans who were on board, too. Martin was drafted at good value, but most of the time i shake my head at trams who waste top ten picks on runners ( ala Saints with Williams and Bucs with the other Williams).

  10. Jon Says:

    Yeah, wrong. Barry sanders, emmitt smith, Walter Payton, Thurmon Thomas, gale Sayers would all disagree.

  11. Legarrettes Blunt Says:

    Really Joe? Is Zack Stacy really the only player on the rams offense that strikes fear into defenses? Because I have read this week about both Coach Schiano and Darrelle Revis talking about how they always have to know where Tavon Austin is on the football field and how they can’t let him get the ball in space. So calling Stacy the only offensive weapon they have is a straight up backhanded slap to Tavon Austin. I knew before the draft he would be a special type of playmaker and he has already delivered some big time plays. Before the draft I was calling for the bucs to pick him(glad we have Revis instead) but I still feel like you have something against that small fast playmaker type player. You constantly bash percy harvin, Tavon Austin, and those types of players. But in reality those players add a dynamic that completely changes the landscape of the offense and deepens your playbook.

    First off, it’s unlikely Austin will play. Second, yes, Joe doesn’t consider Austin a major threat on a trashed ankle. Joe has nothing against those types of players.–Joe

  12. Jason Says:

    Joe, I like Stacy too and he has shown he can handle the load in the NFL, but I think you mistyped with the “averages 6 yards a carry.” I show him with 202 carries at 4.2 yards per carry, which is still very good but not the AP-like 6 yards a carry.