Los Angeles Rams NFL draft picks 2021: Analysis for every selection

The 2021 NFL draft was held April 29 through May 1 and every Los Angeles Rams' draft pick will be analyzed here.

After last season's virtual draft, Cleveland played host to festivities this year with a handful of potential draft picks present and socially distanced because of COVID-19.

Here's a pick-by-pick look at how each player Los Angeles has selected will fit.

Analysis of every NFL pick | Updated NFL depth charts

Round 2, No. 57 overall: Tutu Atwell, WR, Louisville

My take: Rams coach Sean McVay and general manager Les Snead acknowledged this offseason that they lacked a wide receiver last season who could consistently stretch a defense. With their first pick in the draft, they wasted no time addressing the need by selecting Atwell. The small -- he weighed only 155 pounds at his pro day last month -- but speedy Atwell could immediately be the deep-threat playmaker they need, especially since trading for quarterback Matthew Stafford. Atwell has the tools to line up in several positions and be used in multiple ways in McVay’s offense.

Round 3, No. 103 overall: Ernest Jones, LB, South Carolina

My take: Adding strength and depth at linebacker was among the Rams' top needs entering the draft, so it's little surprise that they picked up Jones with a third-round selection. Jones could contend immediately for a spot in a position group that struggled to remain healthy last season and includes Micah Kiser, Kenny Young, Travin Howard and Troy Reeder. Jones is a relentless, physical tackler. He joins a top-ranked defense, but one that is somewhat under transition entering the season under new defensive coordinator Raheem Morris.

Round 4, No. 117 overall: Bobby Brown III, DT, Texas A&M

My take: Following the departure of Michael Brockers and Morgan Fox in free agency, the Rams entered the draft needing to build depth on the defensive line. The 6-foot-4, 321-pound Brown led the Aggies last season with 5.5 sacks and will provide depth behind Aaron Donald, Sebastian Joseph-Day and A’Shawn Robinson. He is the first defensive lineman the Rams have drafted since 2019.

Round 4, No. 130 overall: Robert Rochell, CB, Central Arkansas

My take: The Rams needed depth at cornerback following Troy Hill’s departure for the Cleveland Browns in free agency. Rochell joins a group that includes Jalen Ramsey, Darious Williams and David Long Jr. Rochell had 10 interceptions in three seasons at Central Arkansas, including five last season. He could challenge Long for playing time.

Round 4, No. 141 overall: Jacob Harris, TE, UCF

My take: Harris is listed as a wide receiver, but at 6-foot-5 and 211 pounds, expect him to transition to tight end – he was in contact mostly with Rams tight ends coach Wes Phillips throughout the draft process -- and provide another big target for quarterback Matthew Stafford. Playing behind Tyler Higbee, Brycen Hopkins and Johnny Mundt, Harris could be considered somewhat of a project. He’s only been playing football for five years, as he pursued soccer through most of high school before playing football his senior year.

Round 5, No. 175 overall: Earnest Brown IV, DL, Northwestern

My take: The Rams continue to add needed depth on their defensive front. Brown spent the pre-draft process speaking with Rams defensive line coach Eric Henderson, which indicates he could line up somewhere on the interior in their 3-4 scheme – likely in the place of the departed Michael Brockers and Morgan Fox. Last season at Northwestern, Brown had 7.5 tackles for a loss and one sack.

Round 7, No. 233 overall: Jake Funk, RB, Maryland

My take: The running back position did not appear to be one that needed investment going into the draft with Cam Akers, Darrell Henderson, Raymond Calais and Xavier Jones. Nevertheless, the Rams selected Funk, who proved to be an effective runner and pass-catcher when healthy at Maryland. However, Funk suffered two season-ending injuries, both times tearing his left ACL.

Round 7, No. 249 overall: Ben Skowronek, WR, Notre Dame

My take: Like Funk, Skowronek will compete for a role on special teams. He joins what has quickly become a crowded receivers room that already added Atwell and Harris (though Harris projects as a tight end) in the draft. Skowronek spent four years at Northwestern before he joined Notre Dame as a graduate transfer.

Round 7, No. 252 overall: Chris Garrett, OLB, Concordia-St. Paul

My take: Leonard Floyd will anchor one side of the pass rush for four more seasons after he re-signed in free agency, but the Rams need depth opposite of Floyd. Garrett could have a chance to compete among Ogbonnia Okoronkwo and Terrell Lewis for time. He also will compete for a spot on special teams. Garrett set the D-II record for career forced fumbles with 15.