Evan Silva

Draft Analysis

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NFL Draft Needs: Ravens

Wednesday, March 28, 2018


Evan Silva (@EvanSilva) is the Senior Football Editor for Rotoworld's NFL Page, and Josh Norris (@JoshNorris) leads Rotoworld's college football and NFL draft coverage. Together, they're breaking down every team's biggest needs and offering potential draft-day solutions.


For a breakdown on every team, check out the team-by-team draft preview schedule.

 

 

Ravens Team Need No. 1: Pass Catcher

 

Silva’s Analysis

 

Michael Crabtree, 31 in September, and one-year, prove-it signing John Brown are short-term solutions at best at wide receiver, while top reserves Chris Moore and Breshad Perriman have shown little entering their third and fourth NFL seasons. Baltimore’s tight end depth chart is topped by molasses-slow Nick Boyle and injury-riddled Maxx Williams

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Ravens Team Need No. 2: Quarterback

 

Silva’s Analysis

 

33-year-old Joe Flacco’s yards per attempt have dipped steadily for four years (7.2 > 6.8 > 6.4 > 5.7), and Baltimore’s only other signal caller under contract is practice squad-type Josh Woodrum. Flacco’s contract makes it so the Ravens are likely stuck with him for two more seasons, but it’s time to start planning for post-Flacco life.

 

Ravens Team Need No. 3: Offensive Line

 

Silva’s Analysis

 

Pass rush – interior or off the edge – is another area the Ravens should address. Up front on offense, RG Marshal Yanda is entering his age-34 campaign and missed 17 games the past two seasons with shoulder and ankle injuries. Matt Skura is penciled in at center after struggling mightily at right guard. RT Alex Lewis missed nearly half of 2016 with an ankle injury and all of 2017 with a shoulder injury. LG James Hurst has been a liability whenever he has played. Due to passing-game inadequacies, the Ravens clearly want to play more power football and may focus on plus run blockers in the draft.

 

 

Norris’ Mock Draft

 

Round 1 (16): WR Calvin Ridley, Alabama - It might not ultimately be at No. 16, but the Ravens should exit the early part of the draft with a pass catcher. It might be a cliché to lean in the direction of an Alabama prospect here since Ozzie Newsome is making the call, but Newsome has drafted a Crimson Tide prospect in the first round in two of the last four drafts. Ridley’s game is based on creating separation and sustaining it. That translates to the NFL.

Round 2 (52): T Chukwuma Okorafor, Western Michigan - The Ravens continue to move pieces around on their offensive line. With Alex Lewis seemingly playing left guard, right tackle is a major void. Okorafor did not participate in the Senior Bowl and mostly has experience on the left side, but he has not been mentioned among left tackle prospects, leading me to assume the NFL views him on the right side. His 6-foot-6, 320-pound frame certainly fits that.

Round 3 (83): TE Mark Andrews, Oklahoma - It has been a long time since Dennis Pitta’s seven touchdown season. In terms of creating separation at the short and intermediate levels, and winning after the catch, Andrews fits the profile. However, asking him to play inline is a totally different question.

Round 4 (118): C Scott Quessenberry, UCLA - After theoretically shoring up the right tackle spot earlier, it’s time to focus on center. Quessenberry has NFL pedigree and looked like a future anchor of an offensive line during Senior Bowl week.

Round 5 (154): RB John Kelly, Tennessee - One of my favorite prospects in this class. Kelly runs with power, balance and is a very comfortable receiver for his size. I’ve heard of one or two scouts putting a priority free agent grade on him, which is absolutely ludicrous. Kelly’s game against Florida was one of the best performances by any prospect in this class.

Round 6 (190): WR Byron Pringle, Kansas State - A size and speed prospect with return potential. Pringle attacked defenses vertically, and at the very least he should aim for that type of role in the NFL.

Round 6 (215): EDGE Joe Ostman, Central Michigan - A super-productive pass rusher who could still be on the board during the third day. It is impossible to have too many edge rushers.

Round 7 (238): ILB Shaun Dion-Hamilton, Alabama - Ozzie Newsome ends his GM run by selecting an Alabama prospect. Some might view SDH as undersized, but that has never stopped Ozzie before.



Evan Silva is a senior football editor for Rotoworld.com. He can be found on Twitter .
Email :Evan Silva



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