RAVENS DRAFT HISTORY: Round 4

Baltimore Ravens v St. Louis Rams
(Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)

Last week, we took a look at what the Ravens have been able to get out of the third round in the draft. Despite the many busts, there were a few bright spots that helped the team win in the long-term. This week, we flash back to some of the team’s fourth round picks to see what kind of success the front office has had there. (REMINDER: The fourth round this year will kick off “Day Three” in the draft. It will begin May 10th.)

1997 (118) Tyrus McCloud, LB, Louisville

The team didn’t have a 4th round pick in 1996, making McCloud the first Ravens fourth round selection. The team didn’t exactly start out with a bang, however. The promising linebacker played just two seasons in Baltimore and never made a major impact on the field. GRADE: F

1999 (105) Brandon Stokley, WR, SW Louisiana Stokley was actually one of the Ravens better drafted receivers considering the value here. His stats were never eye-popping but he played a nice role for five seasons. While he wasn’t the long-term solution for a big-play receiver, the small-school wide-out made a difference and on and off the field. GRADE: B

1999 (129) Edwin Mulitalo, OL, Arizona Until 2006, Mulitalo worked effectively as a starter up front. He was a part of the Super Bowl team in 2000 and was a mainstay on the Ravens offensive line over a span of several seasons. For the 4th round, it doesn’t get much better than this. GRADE: A

2001 (126) Ed Hartwell, LB, Western Illinois Hartwell was solid for four seasons with the Ravens. While he was never a standout, he proved to be a capable sidekick beside Ray Lewis and cashed in his success with the Atlanta Falcons. He was never the same player after leaving Baltimore. GRADE: B-

2002 (112) Dave Zastudil, P, Ohio A punter in the 4th round seems like it would get a bad grade regardless, but Zastudil was at times effective. He kept his average yards-per-punt at a respectable number throughout his four seasons, but he couldn’t end up locking down a long-term home in Baltimore. Oddly enough, the team moved on from the left-footed punter after his best season in the NFL. GRADE: C-

2003 (109) Jarrett Johnson, DE, Alabama A fan favorite, “JJ” did had an impressive career here in Baltimore despite regularly being considered a “tweener”. He was a very solid starter on the outside for nine seasons, starting almost 100 games in the purple and black. Give the Ravens some credit here – they found an excellent workmanlike talent in the former two-time captain for The Crimson Tide! GRADE: B+

2003 (134) Ovie Mughelli, FB, Wake Forest Mughelli was a productive contributor to the Ravens rushing attack during his stint in Baltimore, eventually earning second team All Pro honors in 2006 as the team’s fullback. Mughelli cashed in on his success with the Atlanta Falcons while the Ravens moved on with rookie fullback Le’Ron McClain in 2007.  GRADE: B

2005 (124) Jason Brown, OL, North Carolina Brown turned out to be a nice value pick. Although his career started a little slow, he was able to start in 2007 and 2008 with impressive performances. He played so well, the Ravens were unable to retain him after four seasons. He signed a big deal with the St. Louis Rams before the 2009 season. GRADE: B

2006 (111) Demetrius Williams, WR, Oregon This pick was supposed to be one of the team’s best at the time of selection. Williams was a big receiver that looked to have the potential to be a long-term solution for the receiving corps, but injuries tempered those aspirations. It seems like Williams spent more time on the Injury Report than on the field, and as a result, he scored just four touchdowns over four seasons. GRADE: D+

2006 (132) P.J Daniels, RB, Georgia Tech This one could be classified as a bust… Daniels is another guy who spent more time on the trainer’s table than he did on the field. He was never able to make an impact at the NFL level. GRADE: F

2007 (134) Antwan Barnes, LB, Florida International Barnes was an interesting pickup in the fourth round. While he never was a key player in the linebacking corps, he played well as a special-teamer for several seasons. The team probably drafted him in hopes of having an athletic linebacker, they never reaped much value here. GRADE: C

2007 (137) LeRon McClain, FB, Alabama McClain spent a few seasons with the Ravens before parting ways with the team after a decline in production. He had a big season in 2008 (10 touchdowns and 900+ yards) and went on to earn Pro Bowl and All Pro honors in 2008 and 2009. For a fourth round compensatory pick, that’s a score. GRADE: B+

2008 (106) Marcus Smith, WR, New Mexico Although he was expected to have a big future in Baltimore, Smith never even came close to touching a starting role. He tore an ACL in 2009 and never became anything more than a special-teamer. In three season the 106th pick of the 2008 draft never caught a single pass. He’s been out of the NFL since 2011. GRADE: F

2010 (114) Dennis Pitta, TE, BYU We can have a Pitta Party with this one! Joe Flacco found a best friend on and off the field with Pitta, something that has meant more than Pitta’s stats. Flacco is clearly a better quarterback with him on the field and there’s no doubt that when healthy, Pitta is a top-5 tight end in the league. GRADE: B+

2011 (123) Tandon Doss, WR, Indiana Doss was always a tricky player to scout and project. The Ravens thought from the beginning that he could work out, but his career ultimately never got started due to poor play in clutch moments. While the promise was there, Doss never lived up to the potential that Flacco and many others had hoped for. GRADE: D+

2012 (98) Gino Gradkowski, C, Delaware It appears we can officially say this one just didn’t work out. With the signing of Jeremy Zuttah, Gradkowski appears to have a long-term future as a backup lineman at best. Although it’s early, it doesn’t appear he’s progressing as hoped. GRADE: D

2012 (130) Christian Thompson, S, South Carolina State After a suspension and being cut last fall, it became clear that drafting Thompson wasn’t a wise move. He quickly became labeled as a bust after several issues that the Ravens clearly had no interest dealing with. He played in just 7 regular season games as a special teamer before the team parted ways with him despite his physical gifts. GRADE: F

2013: John Simon and Kyle Juszczyk The Ravens drafted two potential future starters last season in Simon and Juice. Neither saw much of the field in 2013, but have been talked about as possible impact players in the upcoming season. While it’s still early, these guys have potential to get playing time if they make a name for themselves in camp and preseason. GRADE: Incomplete

 

Previously Reviewed Rounds

Round 1

Round 2

Round 3

5 Raves on “RAVENS DRAFT HISTORY: Round 4

  1. cheri on said:

    take 2things from this article .1 the ravens really do draft well in the middle rounds not great players by no means but good value.
    2 man do we suck at either drafting or developing wrs.though I have to say for myself I was never ever crazy with the drafting of Williams, m.smith or doss. This just convince me more then ever that I hope they take a wr early.

  2. Your English Teacher on said:

    It would be interesting to see some statistical work done evaluating the average performances of all NFL players (games played, game stats and Pro Bowls) based upon the round chosen and their tenure in the league. This could lead to an objective guideline by which one could grade the picks, and then also grade teams on their draft effectiveness.

    In lieu of that, how about a discussion of what is a reasonable expectation for a 3rd or 4th round player?

    I would do all of this, but I’ve got papers to grade.

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