(FootballStL) -- The NFL draft is approaching. And the only thing we know right now is that we don't know anything. Any one of these guys could turn out to be an All Pro while any one of them could turn out to be, well, nothing at all.
Drafts can't be accurately evaluated until at least three years after the fact, so attempting to decipher what a franchise's future holds in the days and weeks following a draft borders on the idiotic.
Former head coach Bill Parcells used to say a player gets three years to prove that he can play in this league. If he struggles after year one he gets the benefit of the doubt since he was just a rookie. After year two? It's an itch that you're starting to think about scratching. And after three years of underperforming? That's it. No mas.
So whatever happens in this draft Thursday through Saturday - no matter if the Rams get exactly who you wanted or if they didn't - just be patient.
Heck, look back to last year. The 2012 draft class can't even be adequately evaluated. Sure, 1st round pick Michael Brockers, 2nd rounder Janoris Jenkins and 4th rounder Chris Givens look like keepers. Sure, 2nd round picks Isaiah Pead and Brian Quick struggled out of the gate. But would it surprise anyone if those trends discontinued in 2013? Would it surprise anyone at all?
The future of the Rams going forward is as much about the development of the young guys already here as it is about finding new talent to come in and put them over the top. Could they use another wide receiver? Absolutely. But the wide receiver position next season is more dependent on the continued improvement of Quick and Givens as it is finding another young rookie.
Givens' 42 receptions a year ago for 698 yards and three touchdowns was a pleasant surprise. But he needs to show that he's more than simply a one trick pony. Givens has to improve on his route running, especially the intermediate routes, and his overall consistency.
Quick, on the other hand, underwhelmed with just 11 catches and 156 yards as a rookie out of Appalachian State.
So, pretty much, what this comes down to is simple. This approaching NFL draft is quite important to the future of the St. Louis Rams. They need talent. But once it's complete on Saturday afternoon, try and resist the temptation of jumping to conclusions as to what this means for their future.
Their picks won't even put on pads for a few months, let alone play a meaningful game for even longer. Not to mention the fact we still don't know what remaining players have improved as much as they should.
It's a process. A long one.