I have been saying for weeks that I beleived the Ravens would trade up in the first round of this draft. I was not expecting this though.
The Baltimore Sun Is reporting that the Ravens are making calls in attempt to go get Lane Johnson, The Tackle from Oklahoma. Now, for those of you who don’t follow the draft closely, Johnson is pretty universally considered a top 10 pick, and likely has a floor of 7 to the Cardinals. The most likely trade partners would be the Browns(6) the Lions(5) and the Eagles(4). All three teams are desperately trying to trade out of the top 10.
Johnson is a great looking pro, but this would be an incredibly expensive trade up. It would probably cost the Ravens their 32nd pick, their second rounder, their next years 1st rounder and maybe throw in another mid round pick somewhere. The Ravens are in desperate need of a LT, but im not sure anything is worth that much.
The thing working in the Ravens favor is that a handful of experts agree that trading up is relatively cheap in this years draft because of the lack of elite talent(if you dont need a LT that is). It might not coast as much as it cost the Falcons a couple years ago to go get Julio Jones. The Sun says that the Ravens will only go up at a “reasonable” price. If that price spares them having to give up their second rounder(there is no way they could avoid giving up next years first), then the trade isnt all bad. The could go get Johnson and then still come away with a good safety or Sio moore in the second round, probably not have a third rounder and then come back in the 4th and 5th rounds where, because of the depth of this draft, they could be getting second and third round talent. if ever there was a draft worth giving up a lot to trade way up, this is it.
One thing that gives this rumor some backbone, when was the last time you heard a first rounder seriously linked to the Ravens? every player they have been linked to is a mid rounder and they have worked out a surprisingly low number of projected first rounders. That could lead to the idea that they have been thinking about this all along.
If the Ravens believe that johnson is the next great LT in the league, and they don’t like the guys they think will be at 32, then i say go for it. LT is clearly the biggest hole on the roster. Johnson looks like a 10 year starter and has perhaps the highest potential of any of the three stud LTs. This would be a pretty good move because as long as the Ravens pick late in the first round, they probably arent going to be coming across any left tackles any time soon.