RAVENS DRAFT BREAKDOWN: Going deep with wide receivers

NFL Draft RAVENS DRAFT BREAKDOWN: Going deep with wide receivers

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The Ravens have several areas on their roster that they’d like to upgrade, but they also need to get younger at a few key positions. Obviously, Baltimore is looking to add more receiving threats but a few other positions become a little less obvious.

It’s my belief that the Ravens need to move Michael Oher back to right tackle. By doing this, Marshal Yanda would be moved back into RG, which is more of a natural fit for him. If Gaither returns, more than likely he’ll only be around for the 2011 season and the Ravens will need to look at a true left tackle prospect. 

On the defense, Baltimore needs help at all three levels. For one, they’ll look to add a 5-technique defensive end to play opposite Haloti Ngata. Many of the prospects for this position will have played defensive tackle in college. The team needs help in the pass rush department and if they are even the slightest bit unsure of Sergio Kindle’s chances of returning, they’ll almost undoubtedly draft an OLB that can rush the passer.

Baltimore is also in need of another inside linebacker. This could be to play beside Ray Lewis for now, or, if the team is comfortable with Jameel McClain, they’ll still need another inside linebacker to be an eventual replacement for Lewis.

The cornerback situation isn’t as dire as before with Foxworth coming back from a knee injury but it’s unclear if the team will be able to keep both Josh Wilson and Chris Carr. Even if both return, the Ravens still do not have a true "shut down" corner and could look to grab one if available.

The Ravens also need some help at safety. Dawan Landry’s play has declined since his neck injury and Ed Reed won’t be around forever.

For purposes of this Ravens-centric draft analysis in 2011 we will focus upon improving through the draft at offensive tackle, wide receiver, defensive end/OLB, inside linebacker and cornerback.

So far we’ve reviewed the positions of Offensive Tackle and Defensive End.

Today we’ll take a look at Wide Receivers…

WR – Round 1      

Torrey Smith – Maryland: Speedy receiver that ran a limited number of routes at Maryland. Has more than enough speed to stretch the field but still needs to develop. May slip into round 2.
Jonathan Baldwin – Pittsburgh: Big and physical but questions about work ethic and attitude may drop him. Has the physical ability and talent to be drafted much higher than he will be.       
Leonard Hankerson – Miami: Overall, a very consistent receiver. Not elite in any area but would be a solid addition to any receiving corps. 
WR – Round 2      
Titus Young – Boise State: Quick, shifty, often compared to DeSean Jackson. Has some off-field issues that could drop him down boards.


Greg Little – North Carolina: Another overall solid receiver. Does everything very well, but not great.      

Tandon Doss – Indiana: Could be a sleeper if available in the 2nd round. Great combination of size and speed with excellent ball skills. 

WR – Round 3      

Greg Salas – Hawaii: Solid possession receiver. Catches everything near him.       

Vincent Brown – San Diego State: Knows how to get open but is average in most areas.      

Cecil Shorts – Mount Union: Small school sleeper. Smart and solid overall. All-American sprinter.

WR – Round 4      

Ronald Johnson – USC: Ronald Johnson makes plays. He is a tremendous athlete, yet raw enough in some areas to develop. His quickness and elusiveness are 2 of his many qualities, as he always found himself behind defenders and found open field. His offense relied on him for big plays and he always came through. As tough as he is speedy, he has no problem going over the middle and absorbing hits. The return game is where his value rises. As a punt returner he is dangerous; oftentimes being one block away from 6 points. He explodes through holes and easily finds open space. Upper body strength and route running are both areas of where he must improve, as he has all the makings of a solid NFL slot receiver.

WR – Round 5      

Terrence Toliver – LSU: Terrance Toliver is a well-built athlete with a great combination of size and speed. He does an excellent job of making a play after the initial catch and his long arms allow him to challenge for jump balls… Toliver has a mediocre first step off the line but most of his speed comes from his ability to accelerate and reach top end. This ends up affecting his effectiveness at running routes and creating seperation at the line. ~ nflmocks.com

WR – Round 6      

Dane Sanzenbacher – Ohio State: Catches everything, rarely drops the football… Tough player, likes to work the middle of the field, isn’t afraid to get hit… Dependable, great route runner… Simply knows how to get open, finds soft spots in zone coverage and gets separation when faced with man coverage… Makes all of the tough catches… Great intangibles, does a lot of community work… Below average speed, is not a burner… Takes too many false steps at the line of scrimmage… A little undersized to play on the outside… Not much of a threat after he makes the catch. ~ SidelineScouting.com
WR – Round 7      

Ryan Whalen – Stanford: Whalen has decent size and strength and enough speed to be a decent receiver in the NFL, but his lack of production this year has really hurt his draft stock. His 6-2 listing is probably a little generous and he does not have blazing speed either. Whalen does run good routes and is a steady receiver, but his workout numbers will not blow anybody away and that could keep him from being drafted. ~ fftoolbox.com


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