It’s interesting how much luster has fallen off of this year’s NFL draft without the complementary discussions revolving around veteran player movements fueled by free agency. Most teams will fill in for need via free agency and improve depth through the draft. Without free agency it’s only natural to focus more upon the draft.
And with that focus mock drafts are about as abundant as stink bugs and how fitting since most of these self-absorbed draft forecasts do exactly that – stink!
By this time tomorrow we’ll be mocking all of the mock drafts and then laughing out ourselves and at those who created the mocks for the senseless time invested in them. Many of the mocks have a pair of Smiths slotted for the Ravens, namely Jimmy from Colorado and Torrey from Maryland.
The two could not be much more different.
One plays corner, the other receiver.
One you would be proud if your daughter called him a friend. The other you might sit atop your front porch and keep away with a shotgun.
According to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, Cornerback Jimmy Smith flunked three drug tests at Colorado, had two arrests for underage drinking offenses, was arrested for third-degree assault and had two abortions paid for by parents of women he impregnated.
And these are the offenses we know about!
On the flipside, wide receiver Torrey Smith is a high character player who has faced extreme adversity including regular domestic violence during his childhood and formative years. The oldest of seven children born to a single mom, Smith is the first in his family to earn a degree – ironically in criminology.
Both would fill needs for the Ravens. Jimmy is thought to possess lockdown corner skills while Torrey has the top end speed to stretch defenses. That said, the bet here is that of the two the more checkered Smith is more likely to get the call from Ozzie Newsome & Company if the Colorado Buffalo remains on the board at No. 26 and the Ravens actually use that pick.
Smith is often compared to Chris McAlister who also had his fair share of off-the-field issues and despite those issues and knowing what they know today about McAlister, the Ravens say they still would make that 10th overall pick of CMac back in 1999.
The combination of great character and the position of cornerback is about as common as a conservative Democrat. For every Devin McCourty there are 5 Aqib Talibs. The Ravens are very aware of this and seem willing to take the risk on Jimmy Smith.
Supporters of such a move will tell you that the veteran presences in the Ravens’ locker room can clamp down on Smith’s off-the-field shenanigans. But don’t count on that!
It isn’t Ray Lewis’ job to be a baby sitter. How can he control an adult male with money when he’s on his own out in the street? And if for a second you think that he can then ask yourself this question: “How did Ray’s influence work out for McAlister?”
As for Torrey Smith, in the words of the immortal Donnie Brasco, “fuggedaboutit!”
At least not in the first round!
The Ravens love the kid. His character screams for a big man hug. His collegiate coach Ralph Friedgen once said of Torrey Smith, "God created a perfect person."
The Fridge might be right about that but the mockers who suggest he will be a Raven, well they could be right but only if the Terps’ wide speedy wide receiver is still on the board when Ozzie Newsome makes his second round pick.
At No. 26 if either Smith is chosen by the Ravens, his first name won’t be Torrey.
And mockers, it’s really not even close!