Chris Lindstrom, IOL, Boston College
The Super Bowl losers’ roster is overall in a pretty good spot. Other than a few holes, Sean McVay and Les Snead have fully tried to utilise the rookie QB contract window by signing high-profile free agents (Ndamukong Suh, etc.) and trading for a plethora of talent (Aqib Talib, Marcus Peters, Dante Fowler Jr., etc.), which has left their draft cupboard somewhat bare. Thus, the Ram’s 1st round pick is even more important to get right. Making this exercise even harder, Snead has a history of drafting 1st rounders from a variety of positions: from trenches to skill positions and quarterbacks.
- Interior Offensive Line: The Rams won the Built Ford Tough Offensive Line of the Year Award in 2018 but are losing their left guard in free agency to the Tennessee Titans.
- Nose Tackle: With Suh seemingly walking after his one year deal, the Rams should want a premier NT to line up next to Aaron Donald, ideally a run stuffer who can also penetrate one-on-one, with Donald absorbing double teams about 70% of snaps.
- Cornerback: With both Aqib Talib and Marcus Peters lined up on the outside, and Nickell Robey-Coleman in the slot, the CB room looks solid. However, both Talib and Peters are not signed past 2019 and, like the Eagles, with Jared Goff’s impending mega-deal, the Rams will not exactly have money to throw around to a generally expensive position. Moreover, Talib hitting his mid 30’s makes him unlikely to be a long-term contributor.
The Pick: Chris Lindstrom, IOL, Boston College
The Great: Consistency, Technique, and Athleticism
Consistency. Consistency. Consistency. The word that comes to mind when any scout or draft analyst describes Lindstrom is consistency. And really, what else does a coach or fan want out of an O-Lineman other than solid reps that make you a near unknown to the average fan? Lindstrom’s consistency is easily one of his most attractive traits as a prospect and will reward any team that drafts him.
Following the theme of consistency: technique. A high IQ player, Lindstrom’s technique has been polished throughout his college career as a 4-year starter as he responds well to stunts, blitzes, and twists. Lindstrom uses his athleticism to stay squarely in front of the D-Lineman to protect his quarterback. This technique also translates to the run game as Lindstrom uses his athleticism, discussed below, to finish blocks downfield.
Gif 2-3) Lindstrom (RG 75) picks up the stunt
Gif 2-1) Quick stunt recognition by Lindstrom
Gif 1-2) Blitz recognition and pickup by Lindstrom
With an Relative Athletic Score (RAS) of 9.82, Lindstrom is a borderline freak athlete. In almost all athletic testing at the Combine he posted above the 75th percentile, with 97th and 98th in the 40-yard dash and the broad jump respectively. For a heavy zone-running team like the Rams, Lindstrom can quickly climb to the second level and take on linebackers and can match lateral movement better than almost every other IOL prospect. For a team like the Rams who like to run a lot of screens, jet sweeps, and East-West motion, a mobile OG is an essential part of the scheme. Lindstrom would slot in perfectly into a line that blocked for a ridiculous 5.49 adjusted yards per rush.
Gif 3-1) Lindstrom pulls and quickly takes the block on the run
Gif 3-2) Lindstrom climbs to the second level and washes the LB out
Gif 4-2) Lindstrom moves well laterally before planting and pushing forwards
The Good: Arms, Functional Power, and Versatility
Listed at a 6’4”, 305-310 lbs, Lindstrom comes in on the smaller side for OG. However, he makes up for this with fairly long arms which he can use to get his minute hands into the chest of rushers and run defenders. His arms, led by his quickness, can help him negate pass rush moves by D-Lines.
Lindstrom’s 52nd percentile bench press can be misleading, as on film he shows good balance and function strength when anchoring against rushes. He can move linebackers and some D-Lineman out of their spots but will struggle against larger opponents, relying on double teams or down blocks to push them off their spot.
Gif 1-1) DT Lawrence bull rushes Lindstrom back before Lindstrom anchors and the ball is quickly thrown
Lindstrom’s versatility across the O-Line is a plus for any team drafting him. While his size and power profiles translate well into an IOL spot, especially guard, he can slot in as a center if the need arises. Moreover, he has tackle viability for a short duration as he played well at the position in college, however, in the long-term he will be abused by defensive ends due to his hand size, arm length, wingspan, and height. Thus, Lindstrom can be an emergency tackle for a short duration, in case of injuries.
The Bad: Hand Size and Pass Blocking
Lindstrom’s diminutive hands hurt his athletic profile as they give him a smaller target as he seeks to shove defenders’ chest or apply the “hug technique”. However, a good grip and refined technique allows him to overcome this physical deficiency. While he could theoretically be abused by shifty defensive tackles, or quick arms swipes, his general technique and football IQ can help him reset and continue in pass-blocking.
Gif 1-3) DT Wilkins swats Lindstrom’s hands away and penetrates into the backfield
The only real knock on Lindstrom’s pass blocking is a lack of overall reps as out of BC’s 895 offensive snaps in 2018, 558 were rushes, or 62%. Powerful NFL defensive tackles may be able to overpower Lindstrom in drawn-out pass blocking situations, but Lindstrom’s upside as a run blocker and a good pass blocker should have O-Line coaches excited to draft and plug him into their system.
Overall: Projected by some as a 10-year starter, a player that both fits need and BPA, Lindstrom is a no-brainer pick for the Rams. Moreover, as a year 1 starter, Lindstrom is a plug and play OG for the Rams who seek their chance at a title while they still have cap freedom for another year. While he has some physical limitations, his ability to run-block in a variety of schemes should be a positive for the Rams. Lindstrom’s technique are polished and should translate well to the next level, as he can pick up stunts, twists, and blitzes effectively. He still has room to grow as a pass-blocker, due to a relative lack of game reps. Finally, while he may be overpowered by some athletic and long-armed defensive tackles and defensive ends, he can get help from the center while at the guard position. Below are some Lindstrom draft profiles: The Draft Network; NFL; The Game Haus.
Other Player Considered:
- Dexter Lawrence: NT (off the board)
- Jeffery Simmons: DT (torn ACL and Donald already plays the 3-tech)
- Garrett Bradbury: IOL (off the board)
- Jachai Polite: DE (bombed 31 of his interviews at the combine; maturity concerns)
- Greedy Williams: CB (off the board)
- Byron Murphy: CB (off the board)
- Hakeem Butler: WR (Kupp’s return should help the offense return to form)
- Trade down: Quantity over quality (not allowed in the mock)
Do you approve of this pick?
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2019 BGN Mock Draft Order
1) Cardinals (Philliesandthebees): Kyler Murray
2) 49ers (SakPrescott): Nick Bosa
3) Jets (thealien2696): Quinnen Williams
4) Raiders (SisyphusNoMore): Josh Allen
5) Buccaneers (EAGLESBSU): Montez Sweat
6) Giants (ablesser88): Dwayne Haskins
7) Jaguars (20Safety_Hazards): Jawaan Taylor
8) Lions (89Tremaine): Ed Oliver
9) Bills (drc242): Jonah Williams
10) Broncos (ItownBallers22): Devin White
11) Bengals (Phoenix X Maximus): Cody Ford
12) Packers (Palaniappan K M): Brian Burns
13) Dolphins (wildcatlh): Andre Dillard
14) Falcons (Happy24): Rashan Gary
15) Washington (roberticus01): D.K. Metcalf
16) Panthers (JALupowitz): Clelin Ferrell
17) Giants (KevinDont): Devin Bush
19) Titans (Big Schmoopie): Christian Wilkins
20) Steelers (J. Wil): T.J. Hockenson
21) Seahawks (NickfoleonDynamite): Chauncey Gardner-Johnson
22) Ravens (GMinTraining): N’Keal Harry
23) Texans (EaglesRock94): Byron Murphy
24) Raiders (SummersInVA): Greedy Williams
25) Eagles (I Need a Username): Garrett Bradbury
26) Colts (Nolo0oo): A.J. Brown
27) Raiders (SLC Eagle): Josh Jacobs
28) Chargers (LBCeaglesFan!): Dexter Lawrence
29) Chiefs (Boxer Madness): Nasir Adderley
30) Packers (Kephas): Marquise Brown
31) Rams (Matthieuck): Chris Lindstrom
32) Patriots (Zett_66):
Now it’s time for you to vote for who YOU think the Rams should pick in the 2019 BGN Community Consensus Mock Draft.
Who should the Rams draft at No. 31 overall?
This poll is closed
2019 BGN Community Consensus Mock Draft
1) Cardinals: Kyler Murray
2) 49ers: Nick Bosa
3) Jets: Quinnen Williams
4) Raiders: Josh Allen
5) Buccaneers: Montez Sweat
6) Giants: Dwayne Haskins
7) Jaguars: Jawaan Taylor
8) Lions: Ed Oliver
9) Bills: Jonah Williams
10) Broncos: Devin White
11) Bengals: Devin Bush
12) Packers: T.J. Hockenson
13) Dolphins: Andre Dillard
14) Falcons: Rashan Gary
15) Washington: Drew Lock
16) Panthers: Clelin Ferrell
17) Giants: Brian Burns
18) Vikings: Noah Fant
19) Titans: Christian Wilkins
20) Steelers: D.K. Metcalf
21) Seahawks: Chauncey Gardner-Johnson
22) Ravens: N’Keal Harry
23) Texans: Cody Ford
24) Raiders: Greedy Williams
25) Eagles: Garrett Bradbury
26) Colts: A.J. Brown
27) Raiders: Josh Jacobs
28) Chargers: Dexter Lawrence
29) Chiefs: Nasir Adderley
30) Packers: Marquise Brown