As I reported a week ago and Cleveland Browns' general manager Tom Heckert publicly confirmed two days later, the St. Louis Rams are having internal discussions about trading out of the No. 1 pick.
With the several potential suitors (Cleveland, Washington, Seattle, Denver), it is possible that the Rams get the 3,000 "points" as required in the draft pick trade chart every team and media member refers to in these situations.
Far be it from me to offer the Rams, and specifically general manager Billy Devaney, advice on the situation, but I'm going to anyway:
Dear St. Louis Rams,
If you are not 100% sure that Bradford is the answer to your problems, trade the pick.
Even if it means getting less value than the talking heads think you should.
Trading out of the No. 1 pick for less than its perceived value will likely generate some negative reaction from other teams and the media.
The reality is, the Rams, winners of only 6/48 games over the past three regular seasons have holes throughout their roster. The 2010 draft is as deep and talented as any we've seen in over a decade. The money saved on not utilizing the first overall pick would cover the extra players.
And for all of the talk about how difficult it is to trade out of the top pick, the last two teams that did so, received more than fair value for their courage -- though they weren't necessarily viewed as the consensus "winners" when making the deal on draft day.
The San Diego Chargers did it the unconventional way in 2004, selecting Eli Manning with the first pick and then shipping he to the Giants for the 4th overall selection, Philip Rivers, and three picks that the Chargers ultimately turned into Shawne Merriman and Nate Kaeding and veteran offensive tackle Roman Oben.
San Diego was involved in the last trade involving the No. 1 pick, as well, trading out of the top spot in 2001 to Atlanta. The Falcons got Michael Vick and the Chargers got the fifth pick, which they used on LaDainian Tomlison, as well as Atlanta's 3rd round pick in 2001 (Chargers selected CB Tay Cody), second round pick in 2002 (WR Reche Caldwell) and veteran receiver/returner Tim Dwight. Having not filled their quarterback need in the first round, the Chargers used their first pick of the second round on some guy named Brees.
There will be those that argue the Rams should simply ignore Bradford and use the top pick on their highest rated player, almost surely Ndamukong Suh or Gerald McCoy.
Unfortunately for St. Louis, having spent high first round selections on the defensive line in 2007 (Adam Carriker) and 2008 (Chris Long) likely precludes the team from doing so.
My admittedly two-cent advice? Capitalize on the best deal you can get and trade out. Let someone else gamble on Sam Bradford's shoulder. Fill other areas of concern with the first round pick(s). And take the quarterback you really want -- Texas' Colt McCoy -- 33rd overall.
Who knows, maybe the short, remarkably accurate, gutty leader is the second coming of Drew Brees, after all.