The Los Angeles Rams selected Michigan State center Brian Allen Saturday with their first choice on the final day of the 2018 NFL draft and traded receiver Tavon Austin to the Dallas Cowboys.
The Rams chose four linebackers, three defensive linemen, one offensive lineman and a running back with their other nine selections Saturday.
Rams general manager Les Snead described the 6-foot-1-inch, 298-pound Allen as a “really good technician, very smart, great guy but mean on the field.”
Allen was a second-team All-Big Ten Conference selection in 2017, a second-team selection in the media poll as a guard in 2016 and a third-team selection by both the media and coaches in 2016, also as a guard.
“He enjoyed incredible success here at Michigan State, both individually and as a leader on our football team that won a lot of games during his career,” Spartans coach Mark Dantonio said after the Rams chose Allen in the fourth round, the 111th overall selection.
“The characteristics that define Brian are perseverance, grit and intelligence. He is a very powerful, tough minded and confident player with the right mentality to succeed as an offensive lineman in the NFL.”
The Rams obtained a sixth-round draft choice from the Cowboys in exchange for Austin, which they used to select Maine guard Jamil Demby.
The Rams traded Austin after he made a career-low 13 catches for 47 yards and no touchdowns in 2017.
Austin had a wrist injury last season “and couldn’t get on the field and fell behind,” Snead said.
“Unfortunately for him, we kind of moved on in terms of adding people to the roster and by the time he was able to get back, was never really able to get into the rotation,” Snead said.
The Rams chose Austin with the eighth pick in the 2013 draft. He made 52 receptions and five touchdown catches, both team highs, in 2015, when the team was based in St. Louis.
Austin made 58 catches, second on the team, and for 509 yards, third on the team, in 2016, the Rams first season back in Southern California.
The Rams also had a compensatory choice in the fourth round, which they used to select John Franklin, a defensive end from Stephen F. Austin.
In the fifth round, the Rams drafted Virginia inside linebacker Micah Kiser and Oklahoma outside linebacker Ogbonnia Okoronkwo.
The Rams subsequent choices in the sixth round following Demby were Rutgers defensive tackle Sebastian Joseph and Louisville outside linebacker Trevon Young.
The Rams chose Texas Christian linebacker Travin Howard and Southern Methodist defensive end Justin Lawler in the seventh round.