THE GENIUS OF OZZIE NEWSOME: Have the Ravens invested wisely?

NFL Draft THE GENIUS OF OZZIE NEWSOME: Have the Ravens invested wisely?

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It’s interesting how many have written to us suggesting that we are on an Ozzie Newsome witch hunt with our series, The Genius of Ozzie Newsome. Before we move forward I think it’s appropriate to re-establish our intent when we set out to put this series together.

The Ravens have long claimed to take the best player available (BPA) on their draft board when on the clock, regardless of position. Being an inexact science, the NFL Draft will force misses by the likes of Ozzie and his peers. I think the initial result of our research suggests that Ozzie, Bill Belichick, Bill Parcells, the Rooneys and Bill Polian are all capable of making draft day blunders or discovering diamonds in the rough.

We sought to find out, among the organizations the Ravens profess to emulate (Colts, Patriots, Steelers) which has been best since the Ravens inception in 1996.

Getting back to Ozzie’s BPA…

If in fact it’s true that the Ravens will always choose the highest rated available player on their board, then it’s also true that sometimes their board isn’t properly stacked given the better players that were passed on, sometimes at the same position of the selected player.

Others have said that the study includes recent drafts and that it’s far too early to judge those drafts. While we concur let’s keep in mind that each team is evaluated the same way and all share the same grading system. The system wasn’t designed to target the inefficiencies of the Ravens 2010 draft. Each team’s draft was graded the same way.

One final note…our goal is to allow this analysis to be a living and breathing study. In other words as the drafted players improve or decline as performers on the field as seasons go by, their grades will continue to rise or fall.

So for instance in the case of Sergio Kindle who naturally graded out as “0”, his scores could improve if he returns to the field and goes on to be a regular starter and possibly a future Pro Bowler.

As we expected when we took on this cumbersome task, each club has its own unique set of strategies and philosophies when they roll up their sleeves in their respective war rooms. Some are better than others at a particular position. Others have a knack for investing early round picks wisely, while some are better at discovering and developing those raw, unproven talents.

In this segment of The Genius of Ozzie Newsome, we will: 1) Define how wisely each club invests their picks; 2) Learn which team is best in each of the 7 rounds on draft weekend; and 3) Determine which are best at sending their players on an all-expenses-paid-trip to Honolulu – i.e. the Pro Bowl.
 
How Did The Teams Invest Their Draft Picks?
 
The chart below indicates how many picks each team had in each round of the 15 drafts we’ve examined since 1996. The number in ( ) indicates the average draft position the teams held in each of the respective rounds.
 
Team 
Round 1 
Round 2 
Round 3 
Round 4 
Round 5 
Round 6 
Round 7 
Colts 
13 (22) 
15 (50) 
17 (85) 
18 (121) 
16 (154) 
19 (196) 
20 (219) 
Steelers 
15 (21) 
12 (50) 
22 (83) 
16 (123) 
21 (157) 
21 (192) 
18 (229) 
Ravens 
16 (16) 
14 (53)
13 (81) 
16 (122) 
18 (151) 
23 (192) 
18 (234) 
Patriots 
16 (21) 
20 (49)
17 (86) 
22 (118) 
16 (156) 
24 (196) 
27 (234) 
 
The following chart provides a snapshot of just how many picks each of the four teams has had during the 15 drafts in question and how those picks were used given our scoring system.
 
Team 
Total # of Picks 
Avg. # Picks/Draft 
Total Points 
Avg Points/Pick 
Colts 
118 
7.9 
5752 
48.7 
Steelers 
125 
8.3 
5122 
41.0 
Ravens 
118 
7.9 
5101
43.2 
Patriots 
142 
9.5 
4417
31.1 
 
The chart below illustrates how each team has performed by round along with the number of Pro Bowl players and appearances. The percentage in parentheses represents the percent of picks in a particular round that become Pro Bowl players.
 
ROUND 1 
 
 
 
 
Team 
# of Picks 
Avg. Score/Pick 
PB Players 
PB Appearances 
Colts 
13 
216 
8 (62%) 
39 
Ravens 
16 
179 
9 (56%)
44 
Steelers 
15 
110 
6 (40%)
22 
Patriots 
16 
88 
8 (50%)
19 
ROUND 2 
 
 
 
 
Patriots
20 
53 
2 (10%) 
Colts 
15 
50 
2 (13%) 
Steelers 
12 
40 
3 (25%) 
Ravens 
14 
32 
1 (7%)
ROUND 3 
 
 
 
 
Steelers 
22 
49 
4 (18%) 
10 
Patriots 
17 
29 
1 (6%) 
Ravens 
13 
0 (0%) 
Colts 
15 
1 (6%) 
ROUND 4 
 
 
 
 
Steelers 
16 
74 
1 (6%) 
Ravens 
16 
51 
1 (6%) 
Colts 
18 
48 
0 (0%) 
Patriots 
22 
26 
2 (9%) 
ROUND 5 
 
 
 
 
Ravens 
18 
33 
1 (6%) 
Colts 
16 
17 
1 (6%) 
Steelers 
21 
14 
0 (0%) 
Patriots 
16 
13 
1 (6%) 
ROUND 6 
 
 
 
 
Colts 
19 
27 
2 (11%) 
Ravens 
23 
19 
2 (9%) 
Patriots 
24 
17 
1 (4%) 
Steelers 
21 
0 (0%) 
ROUND 7 
 
 
 
 
Colts 
20 
19 
0 (0%) 
Steelers 
18 
18 
1 (6%) 
Patriots 
27 
10 
1 (4%) 
Ravens 
18 
0 (0%) 
 
PB Players ~ Pro Bowl Players
PB Appearances ~ Pro Bowl Appearances
Note: All averages and percentages are rounded numbers
 
PRO BOWL SAVVY?: Here’s a list of Pro Bowl Players each club has fielded since 1996.
 
Team 
# Pro Bowl Players 
# of Pro Bowl Appearances 
Patriots 
16 
41 
Steelers 
15 
37 
Ravens 
14 
52 
Colts 
14 
48 

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Tony Lombardi

About Tony Lombardi

Tony is 24x7 Networks, LLC's founder (the parent of EutawStreetReport.com and RussellStreetReport.com) His work has been featured on various sports websites and he is a regular guest on 105.7 The Fan and he hosts "The Fanimal" also heard on 105.7 The Fan, Saturdays from 8-9AM. Among his favorite things in life are his wife, kids, family, friends, The Beatles, Breaking Bad, Gladiator, The Godfather, Guinness, orange crushes, meatballs and Key West, not necessarily in that order. Follow Tony on Twitter @RSRLombardi. More from Tony Lombardi

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