Saturday, May 7, 2011

NFL Draft Team Grades-Baltimore Ravens

The Ravens need to get younger. Ray Lewis and Ed Reed are older players now, and Joe Flacco needs some young speedsters to get the passing game a little bit more verticle. The Ravens went after it hard, and it was hit and miss. Let's take a look:

Round 1, Pick 27
Jimmy Smith, CB

Despite having no picks, and having a reputation as having some problems, the Ravens felt the need to overreach into the 1st round to grab this guy. Character issues are always a red flag for me, but people say that he has ability. Personally, spending a whole season at corner without picking off any passes is a big red flag as well. Not sold here.
Grade: D

Round 2, Pick 26
Torrey Smith, WR

The Ravens went local with this selection, and it should pay some dividends. With Derrick Mason turning 37, the Ravens need to look to the future, and Smith has the blazing speed that I spoke of them needing. This pick filled a need, and it was a solid choice. The Ravens will have a verticle threat, to take the heat off of Anquan Bolden.
Grade: A

Round 3, Pick 21 (From Philadelphia)
Jah Reid, OT
Central Florida

Climbed quickly by his perfromance in the Shrine Game. Before that, had a reputation of not playing up to his size, which is sconsiderabel at 6-7 and 326 lbs. I never like making a pick based on one perfromance, so I would have passed on this one. I am guessing that he could have been had a bit later on.
Grade: C-

Round 4, Pick 26
Tandon Doss, WR

The Ravens went back to a need position, and added excellent value in the 4th by selecting Doss, one of the best players in the Big 10 that most people hadn't heard of. This guy has some solid talent, and at 6-3, he gives Flacco a big target to get the ball to, and he makes the catches. Raven fan will be happy with this guy.
Grade: A

Round 5, Pick 33 (Compensatory Pick)
Chykie Brown, CB

Hmmm...You would think that the Ravens are suddenly turning into the Bengals with their selections of character risk players. Brown is the second such selection in this draft, and second in the secondary. If Brown and Williams party together, the Ravens depth in the secondary is screwed. Brown is probably a better player than Williams, but they both have a ton of growing up to do.
Grade: D

Round 5, Pick 34 (Compensatory Pick)
Pernell McPhee, DE
Mississippi State

McPhee recorded 10 TFLs in 2010, but only 2 sacks. Bad note for a DE, but he plays more like a tackle. Another drafted player with reported character issues, and also may not be the sharpest knife in the drawer. Physically, he can play. Mentally...well...we'll see.
Grade: C

Round 6, Pick 15 (From St. Louis)
Tyrod Taylor, QB
Virginia Tech

Not the best QB that you will ever see, and is still learning how to be a pocket presence. Still thinks run first, and he was drafted with the wildcat packages in mind. Nobody thinks that he will elevate above 3rd string status, but you never draft for 3rd string. That being said, Taylor worked very hard to improve as a passing QB last season. He still has a long way to go, and I don't see him making it here.
Grade: D

Round 7, Pick 22
Anthony Allen, RB
Georgia Tech

Rushed for 1316 yards and 7 scores for Tech in 2010, which are solid numbers. The rub on him is that he lacks maturity (shocking) and that he comes out of a triple option offense. Runners that come out of triple option offenses usually don't pan out because the style of play is so starkly contrasting. Has the size to be a slammer, and will hit the hole with authority, but will the style of play be too daunting a change?
Grade: C

Potential Surprises
Allen, Brown, Doss

Potential Flops
Williams, Reid, Taylor

Sure To Be a Star
No sure bets in this group, but Doss and Smith appear to be close.

Sure To Be a Flop
Williams, Taylor

Final Team GPA

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