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Mancunian Raven


Joined: 09 Oct 2012
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 19, 2012 1:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

diamondbull424 wrote:
Mancunian Raven wrote:
With Ed Reed coming out and saying that he's suffering from a lingering injury (don't know if it's the same lingering injury as last year) I feel even more strongly that the Ravens need to draft a Safety high in this year's draft.

Reed is pretty beat up, and even though he's still one of the best Safeties in the league, he's going to keep on struggling from these injuries that limit him in certain ways.

And I reckon it's far easier to find a good DL or MLB than it is to find a good Safety. Hell, McClain and Ellerbe are pretty serviceable starters in my view, as long as the players around them are good enough.

So if some of the top Safeties in this draft class are likely to be available in the bottom half of the second round, then great. Otherwise, I'd really like the Ravens to go and get one of them in the first.

Then get a Linebacker or Defensive Lineman in the second.

I disagree with this. If I'm going after a safety it's going to be clear cut BPA... and the only guy that I truly like is Florida's Matt Elam (early 2nd value IMO) and USC's TJ McDonald (early 2nd). I think most college safeties tend to be overrated due to having explosive front 7 units that make them look better than what they truly are. When I scout safeties I like to see incredible instincts mixed with great athleticism and physicality/toughness; I saw that with Earl Thomas and Eric Berry a few years ago and I saw it with Mark Barron coming out last year... but out of the safeties I've looked at so far, I either see lacking instincts or lacking athleticism (stiff hips, speed).. most seem to be willing to mix it up in the box though.

Other than the two names I listed above, I'd rather have impact ILBers at the end of the first round. We just selected an athletic safety with Christian Thompson and I'd rather see what he has to offer. We also proved that we could get by with simply replacing Reed with a Tom Zbikowksi... granted that was also with Chuck Pagano at secondary coach/DC, but hopefully Pees isn't the DC after this season.

You could obviously say we've also gotten by without Lewis, but Lewis also hasn't been playing at an elite level. Either way, this team most needs front 7 impact players IMO. The NFL is won in the trenches and honestly the safety is becoming one of the least valuable positions on the defense... it's awesome if you have an elite safety unit, but as you can see- we have that, yet that's still not helping our corners or our pass rush.

I think unquestionably, we should be looking for a stud 34 DE, an athletic edge threat, or a big impact ILB in this class. I'd put safety below LG and WR in terms of where I'd want us to spend our first round selection. It's just not going to have the same impact as a front 7 player.


Well I'll bow to your greater knowledge on this one. I'm certainly no expert on college players, having only really started watching college football this season (and perhaps it's better not to be, so I don't pin my hopes on a certain player, only to then see him go to Pittsburgh or New England).

But the thought of having to settle for adequate at Safety after years of Ed Reed is more than a little saddening. Still, you're right that the defensive line needs help.

I still have some hopes for Pernell McPhee, that perhaps his drop off is the result of coaching or motivational problems, which can be corrected. Dion Jordan does look like a beast, though. I'd love to have him as a Raven, but will a player like that last until the late 20s in the first round?

I'm not convinced there's a need at WR. Boldin may not be a Raven next year, but the coaches seem to have a lot of faith in Tandon Doss, who has looked reliable when he's been on the field. I could see Jacoby Jones sticking around, if he carries on like he has so far. And I'm still eager to see what the Ravens can make of Tommy Streeter.
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DontTazeMeBro


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 19, 2012 4:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Only 3-4 end prospect I am crazy about is Sheldon Richardson and he is going to be long gone by the time we pick. EDIT: Maybe Bennie Logan too. I like him at LSU. I've never taken a closer look at him.


This ILB from Western Kentucky Andrew Jackson.

http://youtu.be/qZQFoR363mw

This is against Alabama. That's 260 lbs.
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BaltimoreTerp


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 19, 2012 4:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't care whether it's a defensive end or an OLB type, I want an athletic pass rusher to add to this roster from the draft next year. Biggest priority to me.

Seeing as I don't really follow college football/the draft, I'll trust you guys on who is good and who is not.
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diamondbull424


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 19, 2012 7:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mancunian Raven wrote:

Well I'll bow to your greater knowledge on this one. I'm certainly no expert on college players, having only really started watching college football this season (and perhaps it's better not to be, so I don't pin my hopes on a certain player, only to then see him go to Pittsburgh or New England).

But the thought of having to settle for adequate at Safety after years of Ed Reed is more than a little saddening. Still, you're right that the defensive line needs help.

I still have some hopes for Pernell McPhee, that perhaps his drop off is the result of coaching or motivational problems, which can be corrected. Dion Jordan does look like a beast, though. I'd love to have him as a Raven, but will a player like that last until the late 20s in the first round?

I'm not convinced there's a need at WR. Boldin may not be a Raven next year, but the coaches seem to have a lot of faith in Tandon Doss, who has looked reliable when he's been on the field. I could see Jacoby Jones sticking around, if he carries on like he has so far. And I'm still eager to see what the Ravens can make of Tommy Streeter.

It would be a bit depressing, but better adequate safety play over adequate front 7 play. And really, I can't say I watch college football much either... I just try to pick out the positions that we have need for and watch tape on the top guys that are available. Generally there's a lot of tape on most guys in this day and age. Helps me to save a lot of time.

1. That said, I do love watching Wisconsin's OL prospects play games. Between Carimi and Zeitler in the past, I just loved seeing how physical those guys were. And I've tried to catch some Duck games this year to see more of Jordan.

2. In terms of Jordan and why he might be available, it's because his stats aren't exemplary so on the outside he's seen as being a raw player... I think that to be untrue. He plays a unique position in college football, while most of his peers are playing strictly DE and just worrying about setting the edge or rushing the passer, this guy is pressing TEs and WRs at the LOS and covering them in man coverage on occasion. It's hard to get sacks when you're dropping back into coverage a good 40% of the time and pressing TEs before coming in on a blitz on occasion. You can see that when he's just rushing the passer, he's just all around too long, too strong, and too skilled for a lot of those OL to handle him.

Another reason why you could see Jordan fall past the first round, is the competition. This draft appears to have a few H/W/S specimens with LSU's pair of DEs in Mingo/Montgomery... you have Buchanan from Illinois.. enough people like Bjeorn Werner at rush linebacker (I like him better with size), Jarvis Jones from Georgia is high as an edge threat, Texas has both their ends in Jeffcoat/Okafor... plus you have the two top DTs in this class and the front 7 players are many. Jordan is a redhshirt senior without the splash stats and his athleticism while great, probably won't produce freak results to separate himself from the other guys.

That said the other concern about Jordan which might push him down boards is his size. He's nearly 2" taller than Aldon Smith of the 49ers... yet he's about 20 lbs smaller. Many teams will see that and they'll differ to the other pass rushers in this class. I see that as no problem at all. Jason Taylor played his career at 6'6" and from 240-255. He started his career off at the former. Plus Dion Jordan has a lot of room on his frame to easily pack an additional 15-20 lbs without losing much if any athleticism. Then there's the fact that in many cases redshirt seniors tend to be a little "forgotten" on occasion. So I think there's enough reason to believe that Jordan will be available at the end of the first... and the Ravens tend to like senior players or really mature juniors... they like mature players that have dealt with some adversity. Jordan looks like he fits our "type".

3. In terms of the WR position. I think we're "fine" at that spot. But at the same time, we don't truly have an impact player at the position outside of maybe Torrey Smith. Boldin likely won't be back next season unless a) He takes a paycut or b) he continues the season on the current tear he's been on. And while I might like what Doss has shown and be intrigued by what Tommy Streeter could bring... if there is a game-changing WR that somehow is available and is the BPA- I wouldn't be against the Ravens taking him. Not that it's a likely scenario to begin with as the top WRs this year aren't really the game-changer's that we've seen in some of the past drafts... and even then, the likelihood of a WR falling might be slim. I list it above safety because a talented WR would likely elevate the consistency of our offense more than a talented safety would probably elevate the consistency of our defense.
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diamondbull424


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 19, 2012 7:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

DontTazeMeBro wrote:
Only 3-4 end prospect I am crazy about is Sheldon Richardson and he is going to be long gone by the time we pick. EDIT: Maybe Bennie Logan too. I like him at LSU. I've never taken a closer look at him.


This ILB from Western Kentucky Andrew Jackson.

http://youtu.be/qZQFoR363mw

This is against Alabama. That's 260 lbs.

Agreed. I've only like Richardson in that role as well... unless Bjoern Werner would be willing to bulk back up, but even in 2011 he was only the size of a 43 LE (about 275 lbs), the likelihood that he could bulk up to be big enough to play 34 DE and be as explosive would be low. Plus we tried that experiment with Kruger already only to see it fail.

I like Logan as a DT and I think he could succeed as a 34 DE, probably be a little bit like Cory Redding in that role... but I'm not sure he'd be the dominant 34 DE in the mold of Trevor Pryce.

And just saw the tape of Jackson... and yeah, he definitely looks like a player. Built like Vonta Leach and was an enforcer on tape. He could probably stand to lose a little bulk to make him better in pass coverage. But he has the tools you look for physically to be a gifted ILB at the next level.
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RAVINGMADD


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 19, 2012 10:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

coordinator0 wrote:
The team really needs to look at adding some talent to the ILB position. After looking at the other guys they have there on the roster I realized something. Besides Lewis all of the other ILBs were undrafted free agents. McClain, Ellerbe, Ayanbadejo, Bynes, and even McClellan if he gets some reps there. The team has tried to add some talent there in the past with the picks of Gooden and Phillips a few years ago but they've largely relied on Lewis being able to cover for the lack of talent next to him and as we've seen over the last season and a half that doesn't work anymore since he's declined quite a bit. Lewis isn't going to be any better coming back next year either.

This probably isn't anything new to anybody but I think the team will be really focused on adding a quality ILB prospect in this upcoming draft. That might not necessarily mean spending a first round pick on the position (Te'o) although I don't think it's out of the question either. Every year I'm always focused on one position more than the others and I think ILB will be the top candidate for this next draft. There are other obvious needs on defense and I would really like to see them add another pass-rusher regardless of how Suggs looks when he gets on the field but I'm really hoping for the team to take a serious look at an ILB in the top 3 rounds.

WHO'S WITH ME?!

If Te'o actually makes it to our pick, I'd definitely take him. Sadly, I don't think he's going to make it to wherever we pick unless he has a horrible combine somehow or gets injured. But I totally agree we should try to address the position pretty early. Even though Ray is probably going to come back one more year, it would be nice to draft a rookie for him to take under his wing before he retires.

Te'o is just a dream scenario, but it's fun to think about. Maybe his draft stock drops or we trade up for him. I actually ended up trading up for him to replace Ray in either Madden 10 or 11(It was pretty funny to see him do Ray's pregame dance before every home game). Do you think trading up for Te'o is an option? I'd have to watch more of him, but from everything I've seen and heard, he could be worth it.
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coordinator0


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 19, 2012 10:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think trading up could be a more likely option in this draft than in the past since the Ravens should have some pretty nice compensation picks to fall back on. It's hard to say if Te'o would be a likely target especially if he goes pretty early like Kuechly did in this last draft. Would it be worth it? Maybe, but I'd like to see how the rest of the draft class shapes up too.
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RAVINGMADD


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 19, 2012 10:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

coordinator0 wrote:
I think trading up could be a more likely option in this draft than in the past since the Ravens should have some pretty nice compensation picks to fall back on. It's hard to say if Te'o would be a likely target especially if he goes pretty early like Kuechly did in this last draft. Would it be worth it? Maybe, but I'd like to see how the rest of the draft class shapes up too.

Yeah, I totally agree. It's all going to depend on how the rest of the year goes. A lot of things can happen between now and the draft. Maybe we don't have to trade up for him at all because other ILB's rise up the board. I just think that with he's a guy I may be willing to trade up for. We definitely have to focus on the front seven and I'd rather trade up for what I see as about as close to a sure thing as you can get in the draft, than take 2 or 3 decent players for the front seven. I'd say at least 2 of our first 3 picks are going to be front seven, so if the value is there, why not combine 2 picks and get one great guy. Obviously this is all dependent on value and we won't really get any kind of accurate assessment on that until at least after the combine.
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diamondbull424


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 20, 2012 9:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah Te'O is the real deal. After watching some more tape on all of the top ILBs and some of the top OLBs that could make the switch inside, here's how I rank them:

1. Manti Te'O, ND (4.59e forty)-
His coverage skills have really improved over his 2011 film. He's no question the top ILB in this draft. He's strong and can hold up to blocks, he has a thumper mentality as he really attacks the LOS well. He has the athleticism and instincts that allow him to be aggressive attacking the LOS without being exposed by cutbacks. I love that he's not waiting for plays to come to him. Top 20 talent.

2. Arthur Brown, K State (4.47e forty)-
This guy is a player. He's not very big, but neither was Lewis this season. Brown is the best athlete/instincts combination of this group. He has legit high 4.4 to low 4.5 kind of speed... and his quickness looks to be a strength. This is a guy that trusts his eyes and tends to shift between OL to make plays. Even at his size, when he gets blocked, he's able to shed well and make plays. Late 1st/Early 2nd.

3. CJ Mosley, Alabama (4.53e forty)-
Mosley is a beast as well. I think he's in between Brown and Te'O in terms of overall athleticism, but not much separates the three. Mosley is similar to Brown in his ability to take on and shed blockers. Mosley is the better form tackler over Brown, but appears to be less agile. Mosley is also less adept at attacking the LOS and shooting through gaps when compared to Brown from what I see on tape.

That said Mosley and Brown actually look pretty similar to me in terms of their tape, but what separates the two and has Mosley placed lower than Brown is the fact that Mosley simply looks less "natural" as a mover on the field. He just looks kind of awkward as he's running around. He takes longer strides and sort of lands on his feet weird as he runs. This is probably the weirdest reason to ever lower one player below another, but for two players so close... something's got to give and I just can't help but feel like Mosley's less than ideal running motion will make him less durable at the next level. Late 1st/Early 2nd.

4. Andrew Jackson, WKU (4.65e forty)-
When DTMB speaks, I listen. He's put me onto more than one sleeper in the past. And Jackson, while still a junior, is as talented as any player in the top 5 of this list. His ability to play downhill is incredibly impressive. He has the athleticism and strength that is ideal as a thumper at the next level. He reminds me of David Harris at the start of his career with the Jets. 'The Commander in Chief' has the overall athleticism and size to be dominant at the run at the next level, but I'd like to see more tape to see how he is in pass coverage. Pass coverage is becoming one of the more important skillsets for an ILB at the next level, if you don't have that you're a 2 down thumper and your value is no greater than a mid-2nd round guy IMO. The top 3 players on this list excel in that area. With Jackson, it looks like he's only above average in that area. Late 2nd value.

5. Shayne Skov, Stanford (4.78e forty)-
No question that when he was healthy he was the best linebacker on the Stanford defense and the leader. When healthy, he was very explosive when going up field... his ability to explode into the backfield reminded me of Mychal Kendricks from last season. Upon observing more games, he's not as fast as I thought he was initially and he's definitely the worst athlete (speed and agility) of the guys in my top 5, but when healthy his 10 yard split is either the best or second only to Arthur Brown. He's just so explosive when he's attacking. He looks to be the best blitzing ILB candidate in this top 5. When he sits back and waits for plays to come to him, I thought he could do better taking on and shedding blocks for his size, but it wasn't a problem. His tackling is similar to Brown's tackling, both behind Te'O and Mosley. He's also coming back from an ACL and MCL tear (left knee) this season so he's not at 100%. Before that injury he also had a knee sleeve on his right knee, so I'm a little concerned that he could be a sufferer of soft tissue injuries at the next level. I have him below Jackson for those durability concerns. Late 2nd/Early 3rd.

6. Nico Johnson, Alabama (4.58e forty)-
I would've liked to see more production out of him than what he's shown in the stat column, but watching him play, he's simply making plays and showing me instincts. I understand that Alabama is such a talented defense but with Dont'a Hightower moving on, I expect bigger things from Johnson and he's disappointed me. That said, he looks like he's in between Hightower and Mosley in terms of what each does well. Looks more fluid in coverage than DH, but not as good as CJ. He's a strong tackler and makes some nice plays. He looks like he should turn out to be a better player at the next level than in college. Early 3rd.

7. Michael Mauti, Penn State (4.82e forty)-
He doesn't look very fast on the field, but I like his movement skills. He tends to be incredibly instinctive. Certainly one of the most instinctive players in this draft class. He's always reading the QBs eyes when in coverage and makes some nice plays against the run. He's not the athlete you look for, but he has the strength and instincts that should make him at the very least a quality starter at the next level. His instincts are at the top of this class. He probably isn't the 7th best ILB fit in this class, but as of right now, I like what he brings to the table. 4th round.

Guys I didn't like (in order of most disliked):
1. Jamie Collins, Southern Miss (4.68e forty)-
Does this guy ever hustle? I've seen runners only a few feet away from him yet he never seems to throw on the boosters and utilize the closing speed that he rarely shows. I had to stop watching this guy's tape because he simply looks too lazy out there. I mean, does he even want to be out there? But maybe it was a bad game? So I watch his more recent tape and it was the same. I'm not a fan.

2. Zaviar Gooden, Missouri (4.39e forty)-
Two words: Tavares Gooden. Zaviar has tremendous athleticism to make you believe he has awesome upside, but I wasn't a fan of his toughness, instincts, nor tackling ability. Those are the three most important things I like to see when looking at a LB.. and he didn't have them. So the fact that he's probably the most athletic linebacker in this class and likely to be a workout warrior at the combine means absolutely nothing to me. Not interested.

3. Kevin Reddick, NC (4.6e forty)-
I just don't like how Reddick never looks to be aggressive with attacking the LOS. Reddick waits too long and waits too often for the running game to attack him than for him to attack the run. He has the athleticism you look for and his instincts aren't the worst, but he's too passive. Blockers will get into his frame too often and he's not an intimidator. And while his instincts aren't bad, it's never going to be anything better than average from my perspective.
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Mancunian Raven


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 20, 2012 9:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If the Ravens could accumulate a few more picks, like the Patriots regularly, do, then I wouldn't be averse to them trading up to get Te'o. He's the sort of talent that could fill the hole left by Ray Lewis. And if Ray chooses to stick around for another year, any ILB pick would benefit hugely from playing alongside him.

But I don't think that they can really afford to be giving up picks this year, with what looks like a few growing holes on the roster. I don't think any of the compensatory picks they might be awarded will give them too much leverage, either.

Perhaps, if Te'o is attainable, and they feel they can get another starter or two in a strong draft class, they might give up a pick or two from the 2014 draft to move up in this one.
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diamondbull424


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 20, 2012 11:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mancunian Raven wrote:
If the Ravens could accumulate a few more picks, like the Patriots regularly, do, then I wouldn't be averse to them trading up to get Te'o. He's the sort of talent that could fill the hole left by Ray Lewis. And if Ray chooses to stick around for another year, any ILB pick would benefit hugely from playing alongside him.

But I don't think that they can really afford to be giving up picks this year, with what looks like a few growing holes on the roster. I don't think any of the compensatory picks they might be awarded will give them too much leverage, either.

Perhaps, if Te'o is attainable, and they feel they can get another starter or two in a strong draft class, they might give up a pick or two from the 2014 draft to move up in this one.

1. I fully agree. I doubt we would give up a pick to get Te'O. While he's really good and looks like he'll be an elite player in the NFL... he doesn't look like a Patrick Willis. At best I'd say he's Brian Cushing level, but more likely a Jerod Mayo level of play.

So obviously we'll need to see how the draft plays out, but unless Te'O falls within 6-7 spots of our selection (assuming we're at least picking about 26th or so)... then I doubt we attempt a trade up. He's a top 20 talent certainly, but I'd a) rather stay put and take Dion Jordan if he's available or b) trade down to the early 2nd and take either Mosley or Brown while having additional picks to use to acquire draft talent.

2. I doubt we would trade future picks though. The only time I ever remember us doing this was with Kyle Boller, a QB. And that move failed so miserably that I doubt we ever see something like that again under Ozzie's watch. Especially with us not having any particularly good compensation picks to likely be coming back next season, if any... I can't recall an important player on the roster whose contract is running up that we're not likely to resign. I can only think of Flacco, Reed, and Cary Williams... and you'd have to think we return all but Williams.
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coordinator0


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 20, 2012 3:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think it depends on the caliber of prospect they potentially try to trade up for. To me depth isn't the only concern on the defense, they need to add another "true" play-maker to the front-seven. The odds are that they won't be able to sit at wherever their first round pick is and have somebody in that mold drop to them. I'm not singling out Te'o as a target but I don't think it's out of the question that they trade some picks to move up.

Here's an early analysis of the compensatory picks the Ravens are likely to receive:

http://russellstreetreport.com/ravens-to-receive-4-compensatory-picks-in-2013/

Kemoeatu might figure into the conversation as well but it looks like the team is receiving the maximum number of compensatory picks allowed which is four. The fact that four of the players the Ravens lost are starting for their new teams (Grubbs, Johnson, Nakamura, and Redding) is nice.

I agree that trading future picks is highly unlikely. Along with Boller the only other time I remember this happening was when they trading a future 2nd round pick to New England to take Adam Terry at the end of the 3rd round. That's just not Ozzie's style and I agree with it.
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RAVINGMADD


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 20, 2012 10:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

coordinator0 wrote:
To me depth isn't the only concern on the defense, they need to add another "true" play-maker to the front-seven. The odds are that they won't be able to sit at wherever their first round pick is and have somebody in that mold drop to them.

That's basically what I'm saying. It could definitely end up being more beneficial for us to trade up and get a play-maker for this defense. Ozzie has always been successful drafting defensive players in the first round and with a high first round pick we could possible end up with another Suggs or Ngata type of playmaker to add to this defense. I like Te'o because he fits the mold to replace Ray and he has all the intangibles and athleticism. Not to mention, his experience with the 3-4 should definitely help him transition to the NFL. Baring injury, I don't see this guy being a bust. I definitely see him being a play-maker in the NFL. With that said, if we could trade up for a DL or pass rushing OLB that's as much of a sure thing, I'd definitely go for that instead.

I haven't yet really gotten a good look at a lot of the pass rushers in college this year though. I really wish we would have been able to get Bruce Irvin in the last draft. He was definitely my favorite guy pre-draft since Lardarius Webb.
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DontTazeMeBro


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 20, 2012 10:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You know what? Tyrod vs. Painter this summer made me uncomfortable. And what says Ravens type player more than one of these gritty super-clutch zone-read Heisman QBs? If Collin Klein's stock is as low as NFLDS has him(I doubt it), I want him in the 4th.
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1/10. Not a fan[of C.J. Mosley]. Just another future failed Alabama product.
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STrid


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 21, 2012 9:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

diamondbull424 wrote:
Mancunian Raven wrote:
With Ed Reed coming out and saying that he's suffering from a lingering injury (don't know if it's the same lingering injury as last year) I feel even more strongly that the Ravens need to draft a Safety high in this year's draft.

Reed is pretty beat up, and even though he's still one of the best Safeties in the league, he's going to keep on struggling from these injuries that limit him in certain ways.

And I reckon it's far easier to find a good DL or MLB than it is to find a good Safety. Hell, McClain and Ellerbe are pretty serviceable starters in my view, as long as the players around them are good enough.

So if some of the top Safeties in this draft class are likely to be available in the bottom half of the second round, then great. Otherwise, I'd really like the Ravens to go and get one of them in the first.

Then get a Linebacker or Defensive Lineman in the second.

I disagree with this. If I'm going after a safety it's going to be clear cut BPA... and the only guy that I truly like is Florida's Matt Elam (early 2nd value IMO) and USC's TJ McDonald (early 2nd). I think most college safeties tend to be overrated due to having explosive front 7 units that make them look better than what they truly are. When I scout safeties I like to see incredible instincts mixed with great athleticism and physicality/toughness; I saw that with Earl Thomas and Eric Berry a few years ago and I saw it with Mark Barron coming out last year... but out of the safeties I've looked at so far, I either see lacking instincts or lacking athleticism (stiff hips, speed).. most seem to be willing to mix it up in the box though.

Other than the two names I listed above, I'd rather have impact ILBers at the end of the first round. We just selected an athletic safety with Christian Thompson and I'd rather see what he has to offer. We also proved that we could get by with simply replacing Reed with a Tom Zbikowksi... granted that was also with Chuck Pagano at secondary coach/DC, but hopefully Pees isn't the DC after this season.

You could obviously say we've also gotten by without Lewis, but Lewis also hasn't been playing at an elite level. Either way, this team most needs front 7 impact players IMO. The NFL is won in the trenches and honestly the safety is becoming one of the least valuable positions on the defense... it's awesome if you have an elite safety unit, but as you can see- we have that, yet that's still not helping our corners or our pass rush.

I think unquestionably, we should be looking for a stud 34 DE, an athletic edge threat, or a big impact ILB in this class. I'd put safety below LG and WR in terms of where I'd want us to spend our first round selection. It's just not going to have the same impact as a front 7 player.


It's not often that we agree regarding draft stuff, DB, but here we do, at least somewhat Wink.

Just like you I would only go with a safety high if he is by far the BPA available. We've discussed this before, so you know my stance on BPA vs. Position, but IMO the safety is becoming less and less important, or can at least be made so by a great front 7. Those guys are probably even more affected by a great rush than the CB's are simply because they rely on the QB being limited in where he can go with the ball. A safety doesn't normally have to cover skills of a CB, so they need the QB to be forced into making bad decisions or poor throws so they are in position to make a play on the ball.

Safeties that are able to cover TE's and WR's one on one are almost always selected at the top of the 1st round, i.e not in a position we're picking. History has shown that safeties picked outside of the top 15 or so seldom have amounted to much, at least as far as I remember. I think we'll be perfectly able to find an adequate safety later in the draft as long as we don't require him to cover a lot 1on1 or stuff like that. Those things are for the elite safeties that might as well be CB's. I'd much rather try to replenish some of the talent we once had along the DL. Getting another stud lineman would be huge.
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