Thanks go to Mr MaLoR for contributing some good stuff about our very favorite (and only real) division rival. Next up: San Francisco 49ers and they'll be represented by c63tho.
By the way, take note of the cool little minute-long draft profiles from SBN NFL that are embedded with these picks. It's been Michael Bean's personal project to make these videos happen, and let us know what you think of them! -barnerburner-
Heading into the 2012 draft, the Baltimore Ravens do not really have a bevy of needs that have to be addressed. Ravens director of player personnel, Eric DeCosta, even stated himself that this was a "Depth Draft" for Baltimore, entailing that we want to reload those role player spots behind our starters.
"I think this is a depth draft for the Ravens at virtually every position. We need a lot of good young players. My philosophy with the draft is we want as many picks as we can get. The draft is really all about luck, and the more picks you have, the better chance you have to get lucky. We need players at every position across the board. The more picks we have, the better chance we have to hit on a few guys. That's where we are with that."
Come Thursday night, I could see the Ravens spending a 1st round pick on any position other than QB, RB, TE and CB. The Ravens have lost 6 players from last year's roster already, and a few of them were very good players in our system. As of right now, the main needs for Baltimore are (in no particular order) DE/DT, LG, OLB, ILB, S, OC. Any one of these positions could stand to see some young talent brought in for depth and possibly even starting. But as we all know, Ozzie goes BPA in the 1st few rounds rather than reaching to fill a hole. Doing the latter can sometimes ruin a roster, because you passed on the chance to get a better football player than the guy you chose.
So with the 29th pick in the 2012 NFL Draft, the Baltimore Ravens select....
Devon Still - DT - Penn State University
This was a pure Best Player Available pick. As of right now, I have Still rated higher on my board than 4 of the players already picked. Being that I am relatively close to PSU and know a good amount of people who went there, I have had an interest in their football program for quite some time now. To put it simply, Still is an absolute monster. He is one of the best run stuffing DT's I have seen in a while, and is a relentless tackler. Having 17 tackles for loss in the 2011 season is a staggering number. He has elite athleticism and is a leader on the field. All you need to do is watch a few snaps from Still to realize just how dominant he was against interior O-Lineman.
At this pick, it was between Devon Still and Kevin Zeitler. While Zeitler would fill really the only immediate need for Baltimore at LG, Still was the higher ranked player for me. And he could very well be a starter come week 1 given that Baltimore just lost their previous starting DE, Cory Redding, to the Colts as well as backup DT Brandon McKinney. At the moment, the two players fighting for the open 3-4 LDE spot are 3rd year player Art Jones and 2nd year player Pernell McPhee. Both players were 5th round picks, and are 2 players that the coaches and fans are extremely high on. Jones was once considered a 1st round pick before injuries plagued the end of his career. And McPhee came into Baltimore and exceeded all expectations by finishing the season 2nd on the team in sacks with 6.0. However, Still is the prototypical 3-4 DE. He has the size and strength to play the position, and would assure Baltimore of having one of the most dominant front lines in football for many years to come by pairing him with Cody and Ngata. This only makes an already very young defense even younger and better.
A few of the other options that I contemplated here were WR Kendall Wright and DE/OLB Chandler Jones. Ozzie Newsome has made it clear that he would like to add another WR and Pass Rusher in this draft:
"We need to add some players on the offensive line. We can add another receiver. We still feel like we can add some depth at the pass rusher position, or SAM backer."
Kendall Wright would fit in here because of his vertical presence, which is something Baltimore is really looking for opposite Torrey Smith. And with the departure of one of the most reliable OLB in the league, Jarrett Johnson, the Ravens would like to maybe replace his presence with a player like Chandler Jones (who is also the brother of DT Art Jones on the Ravens).
So given how the draft has played out so far, Ozzie walks away with one of the safest picks in this draft and a guy who could very well become yet another Pro Bowl player in the near future for Baltimore.
BTSC 2012 Community Mock Draft Picks:
- Indianapolis Colts -- Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford
- Washington Redskins -- Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor
- Minnesota Vikings -- Matt Kalil, OT, USC
- Cleveland Browns -- Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers -- Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU
- St. Louis Rams -- Dontari Poe, DT, Memphis
- Jacksonville Jaguars -- Quinton Coples, DE, UNC
- Miami Dolphins -- Ryan Tannehill, QB, Texas A&M
- Carolina Panthers -- Luke Kuechly, LB, Boston College
- Buffalo Bills -- Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame
- Kansas City Chiefs -- Brock Osweiler, QB, Arizona State
- Seattle Seahawks -- Melvin Ingram, DE/OLB, South Carolina
- Arizona Cardinals -- Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa
- Dallas Cowboys -- Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama
- Philadelphia Eagles -- Mark Barron, S, Alabama
- New York Jets -- Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama
- Cincinnati Bengals -- Cordy Glenn, G/T, Georgia
- San Diego Chargers -- Nick Perry, DE/OLB, USC
- Chicago Bears -- David DeCastro, OG, Stanford
- Tennessee Titans -- Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina
- Cincinnati Bengals -- Michael Brockers, DT, LSU
- Cleveland Browns -- Jonathan Martin, OT, Stanford
- Detroit Lions -- Whitney Mercilus, DE, Illinois
- Pittsburgh Steelers -- Dont'a Hightower, LB, Alabama
- Denver Broncos -- Fletcher Cox, DT, Mississippi State
- Houston Texans -- Stephen Hill, WR, Georgia Tech
- New England Patriots -- Courtney Upshaw, DE/OLB, Alabama
- Green Bay Packers -- Shea McClellin, DE/OLB, Boise State