Report: Rams have preliminary talks with No. 1 pick prospects

What’s your price?

That is the question the St. Louis Rams have begun asking three players as they prepare for the beginning of the NFL draft, four weeks from today. Yes, the Rams are on the clock with the No. 1 pick.

According to a report by Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the Rams have initiated preliminary talks with the agents for quarterback Sam Bradford and defensive tackles Ndamukong Suh and Gerald McCoy. Apparently, Notre Dame quarterback Jimmy Clausen is also in the mix, but no one considers him a serious candidate to be the top selection at this point.

"All the people who are in the discussion (for No. 1 overall), we've talked to their agents," Kevin Demoff, vice president of football operations, told Thomas. "We're really just comparing notes. Also, it may take some time, so we figured we'd get a head start.

"It's not a thing about playing them off against one another," Demoff said. "I don't really believe that that works. It's a complicated deal. It's got a lot of moving parts. You're just getting the sense for which parts are important for which people. So if you get down that path ... you've already done a lot of the legwork."

Deals for quarterback Matthew Stafford and left tackle Jake Long were completed before the previous two drafts by Detroit and Miami, respectively.

Powerful CAA, led by Tom Condon and Ben Dogra, represent Bradford and McCoy. Suh is being represented by Roosevelt Barnes of Maximum Sports Management and Clausen’s rep is Gary Wichard of Pro Tect Management. Demoff said he expects to begin swapping preliminary numbers early next month.

"The goal is to get the right deal for the right player that you want to draft," Demoff said. "If that happens before the draft, great. If it doesn't happen before the draft, then we'll spend May, June and July working on it.

“In the end we're going to take the best player for the Rams; the contract will be second."

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