The St. Louis Rams have been eerily quiet throughout free agency. While many other teams were signing skill position players at positions of need, the Rams seemed to be content to wait until the big names were gone until making a splash. Their first semi-big signing has now taken place with the addition of Mike Sims-Walker to their receiving corps. We take a look at the dynasty impact in the latest version of the fast and furious series known as “Instant Analysis.”
Mike Sims-Walker, WR STL
Sims-Walker was a favorite sleeper of DLF a few years back when the Jaguars drafted him out of Central Florida. Since that time, he’s shown both flashes of greatness and a tendency to get hurt. The Rams seem to be collecting players with knee issues, so Sims-Walker fits like a glove.
On the plus side, there weren’t too many places better for Sims-Walker to land. Sam Bradford is a developing young quarterback in desperate need of receiving help. When you look at the depth chart of the Rams, you see a lot of promising players like Danny Amendola and Danario Alaxander, but no real dominant force. While it would be a stretch to put Sims-Walker in that category, he is quite productive when healthy.
On the down side, Sims-Walker tends to disappoint his fantasy owners every time hope is restored. After a promising 2009 season that featured 63 catches for 869 yards and seven scores, he was on the map as a potential future low-end WR1. However, last year was a disaster as he finished with just 562 yards and seven touchdowns on 43 catches. To make things matters worse, he had 258 of those yards in two games and 304 in all the rest, showing a maddening level of inconsistency.
Sims-Walker’s deal is only for one year and $3.7 million, so he’s not assured of anything. We like the landing spot, but it’s hard to place a high level of confidence in him – he’s broken our hearts before. Regardless, his ranking of #52 in the Dynasty Essentials Guide is bound to take a little bit of an uptick in the next version.
Sam Bradford, QB STL
As we noted, Bradford is in need of weapons in several areas. While Sims-Walker is a semi-flashy signing, Bradford owners likely wanted more. Perhaps they’ll get it soon in the form of Braylon Edwards or Plaxico Burress, but for now this is a little disappointing.
Danny Amendola, WR STL
Amazingly, some dynasty owners are seriously downgrading the receiving corps of the Rams, including Amendola. This signing adds another player to the depth chart, but doesn’t necessarily change much on it at this point. Sims-Walker is going to have to prove he can contribute before climbing up the depth chart ladder. Amendola and the rest of the Rams receivers are in the same boat – they need to all step up and establish a role.
Mark Clayton, WR FA
The signing of Sims-Walker doesn’t stop the Rams from pursuing Clayton, but it’s hard to see them pursue him too aggressively now. He may be searching for a new team to take a chance on him coming back from his injury.
Mike Thomas, WR JAX
Thomas is one of our favorite “under the radar” players this year. After emerging as the Jaguars best receiving weapon last year, he now has a clear path to the number one job in Jacksonville with Sims-Walker out of the mix. Thomas is a player to target as a low-end WR2 who could be a real asset, especially in PPR leagues.
Jason Hill, WR JAX
Hill has bounced around the league a bit, but showed some real ability at the end of last season. It looks as if he’ll slip into the number two spot in Jacksonville and could be a nice little sleeper this season.