Dec 7, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Missouri Tigers wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham (15) runs a touchdown past Auburn Tigers cornerback Chris Davis (11) during the second quarter of the 2013 SEC Championship game at Georgia Dome. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Liles-USA TODAY Sports
The Ravens have not drafted a wide receiver in the first round since 2005. This year could very well be the year it happens again as Torrey Smith prepares for free agency and Steve Smith heads into his age 36 season. This is a team that desperately needs a number one wide receiver to pair with Joe Flacco if they hope to contend for another Super Bowl title.
We’ve already discussed the likelihood of projected first round receivers like Jaelen Strong and Devin Funchess getting their name called when the Ravens are on the board at number 26, and today we shine the light on a guy who may be there as well – Missouri’s Dorial Green-Beckham. Beckham is a tremendous talent who is also one of the biggest boom or bust prospects in this year’s draft.
Green-Beckham, after all, hasn’t played football since 2013 after multiple issues, including an allegation of violence against a female, got him ousted from Missouri’s program. This may be the biggest sticking point for the Baltimore Ravens after they took a huge PR hit in 2014 stemming from their handling of Ray Rice’s domestic violence incident. The team is said to be focusing more on players with character issues going forward.
Much boils down to the interviews that will take place over the next several weeks, of course. Oftentimes teams will give players the benefit of the doubt if they seem to have put past incidents behind them. These are young men, after all, who do the stupid things that most young men do. The nature of Green-Beckham’s incidents are most concerning, however, and go past the typical transgressions of youth.
If a team rolls the dice on DGB, they will be rewarded with a player who possesses true game changing talent when on the field. He is quite possibly a top ten guy based on raw ability alone – a physical specimen who blows by opposing corners with effortless speed. Green-Beckham also has a rare catch radius, soft hands, and elite body control.
The recent issues the Browns have faced with Josh Gordon, along with Justin Blackmon’s struggles as a pro will probably hurt Dorial Green-Beckham’s draft stock the most. While DGB has obvious first round talent, he could fall all the way to a third day pick if teams decide he isn’t worth the risk. And you can’t blame them when we’re talking about a guy who couldn’t stay out of trouble or demonstrate any kind of work ethic through his college career.
At this point, it seems unlikely that the Ravens would take a chance on a guy like Dorial Green-Beckham in the first round. While they have shown a willingness to take chances on talented players in the past, they might be better off rolling the dice on a guy like Marcus Peters instead. Or just avoid troubled players altogether this year and draft those who possess strong character and on field talent. Bargains in that player pool, however, are hard to find.
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