In Baltimore, opinion on Ozzie Newsome has ranged from the worst GM in football, to the best the league has ever seen. Fans were skeptical at first, just to find out that Newsome has a plan yet again.
Newsome proved his plan by making another marquee signing on Wednesday. Michael Huff has been signed to a three-year, six million-dollar deal, further solidifying the 2013 Raven defense. Huff was a former 1st round pick by Oakland, and was a real fan favorite when he was a Raider.
We don’t know if Newsome is done in free agency yet, but we do know that he has already started draft preparations. As I wrote in my previous article, I believe that there is a plentiful amount of talent to make every one of the Ravens’ 12 picks count. That said, coming off of a Super Bowl victory, there just aren’t 12 roster spots available for these rookies.
An easy solution? A draft pick(s) trade.
Most teams would be thrilled to have 12 picks and use them in every way they could, but the Ravens are in a scenario where many holes are filled and they only have a few immediate needs. If they can bunch a few of their picks together and create a package to offer to another team to move up, a team might jump.
Many believe the Ravens will look for a Left Tackle in the draft. There are three elite guys in this class: Luke Joeckel, Eric Fisher, and Lane Johnson. There are at least four teams that could go tackle, so the chances of one of these linemen getting out of the top 10 are very unlikely.
I’m sure the organization would love to snag one of these young guns, but the price would be costly. Moving into the top-10 would require at minimum– the first and second round picks with another pick in the first three rounds of 2014.
D.J Fluker from Alabama has been named by some as a possible draft pick, but I don’t think he is worth a first-round pick. He has been labeled much higher than he should be, in my opinion.
Should the Ravens want to trade up, but don’t want to give up as much, a viable option would be moving in the second round. This is a very deep class, and some second-round picks will have first-round talent.
If the O-Line need isn’t addressed in round one, Menelik Watson or Justin Pugh could be options. Both of these players probably won’t be there when the Ravens pick in the second round, but moving up slightly could land them a star lineman to help protect Joe Flacco.
The fact is, we won’t really know what Ozzie Newsome will do until draft day. Any pick trade will happen on those days, so it might come down to the last minute. One thing is for sure however – Newsome has a plan.
And if you don’t believe it by now, you’re probably from Pittsburgh.