With each passing day, it is seeming more and more likely that Boston College quarterback Matt Ryan will indeed slip to the Ravens, when they are on the clock with the eighth pick.
Ryan has long been rumored to the Falcons, who are in desperate need of quarterback after the Michael Vick situation, but they seem to be leaning towards taking a defensive tackle and waiting until the second round to nab either Brian Brohm, Joe Flacco or Chad Henne.
If Ryan gets past the Falcons, the only other team in the top 10 that would realistically consider taking him would be the Chiefs. However, they seem content trying to let Brodie Croyle grow into their quarterback of the future.
Of course thereâ€™s always the chance that a team like Panthers or Bears could try to swindle a trade with the Patriots in order to jump up to the number seven spot but as of now it seems like Ryan has a better chance than ever of ending up in Baltimore.
The question then becomes, is Ryan the right pick for the Ravens if heâ€™s there at eight?
At this point, Iâ€™m not 100% sure. The need for a quarterback is obvious but do the Ravens risk picking based on need rather than on the best player available? Donâ€™t get me wrong, Ryan is a great player and the top quarterback in the draft but Iâ€™m not convinced he will help the team more than someone like Leodis McKelvin.
Youâ€™ll hear analysts talk all day long about Ryanâ€™s intangibles but when I watch him play I see a quarterback whose upside is somewhat limited at the next level. I think heâ€™ll be an above average starter but I donâ€™t necessarily see the Pro Bowl quarterback youâ€™d expect to get with a Top 10 pick. Ryan has the size and tools but his accuracy is inconsistent and he will never be mistaken for Jamarcus Russell, Brett Favre or even Kyle Boller in terms of arm strength. Ryan forces throws into coverage way to often for a quarterback as intelligent as he is and he struggles with the deep ball at times. With all that said, you can never discount the fact he is fearless under pressure and he is at his best when the game is on the line.
I was looking through player comparisons on nfldraftscout.com and they compared Ryan to Texans quarterback Matt Schaub while they compared McKelvin to former Falcon and current Raiders cornerback DeAngelo Hall.
So my question becomes, which player would you feel better about selecting with the eighth pick, Schaub, a very solid but unspectacular starter in the NFL, or Hall, a Pro Bowl talent who is able to take an opposing teamâ€™s top receiver virtually out of the game?
Prior Draft 2008 Posts ~ Ravens Style
Get all of Matt’s latest on the NFL Draft at Press Box Online’s Football 101.