I’ve been following the NFL draft since 1973. Even as a kid, looking forward to the NFL draft was only second to the Super Bowl. So it is with great intrigue and interest, that I follow the draft – and all the craziness that leads up to it. In following the Ravens, it’s been maddening to watch Ozzie and his staff almost year after year trade back, and pick up extra draft picks. They got a great deal last year, swapping 1 pick for 3 with Denver, so they could select Tim Tebow. The Raven’s front office just had to make that deal.
As I said, it does get frustrating when your team is on the clock, and it trades down. Then you have to wait several hours until it is our turn again. I’m not going to rehash our past drafts, but I will share with you my thoughts in terms of what the Ravens need, and who is available when they are on the clock for every round:
1. Jimmy Smith, CB, Colorado
Height: 6-2. Weight: 205.
Projected 40 Time: 4.52.
(A rush end here to compliment Suggs would be nice, but I think there will be a better value with a corner. Smith is a big guy, and he may slip to us at the end of the first round.
2. Justin Houston, DE/OLB, Georgia
Height: 6-3. Weight: 257.
Projected 40 Time: 4.65.
(Here’s your rush end opposite of Suggs. Good athlete with a great upside)
3. Jerrel Jernigan, WR/KR, Troy
Height: 5-9. Weight: 189.
Projected 40 Time: 4.39.
(Don’t see the team bringing back Stallworth. Jernigan is also a KR with really good speed. He could be a poor man’s Mike Wallace)
4. Tim Barnes, C, Missouri
Height: 6-4. Weight: 300.
Projected 40 Time: 5.17
(This will be Matt Birk’s last year. Hopefully Barnes can take over half way through)
5. No pick – sent to Seattle for Josh Wilson
6. Jermale Hines, SS, Ohio State
Height: 6-2. Weight: 210.
Projected 40 Time: 4.63
(Landry hasn’t been the same since his collision with Jamal Lewis)
7. Will Yeatman
6’6, 250 pounds
University of Md
(big strong fast tight end with great hands; played lacrosse at Maryland, but will play TE in the pros)