NFL Draft: How board needs to fall for Ravens (OL edition)
The Baltimore Ravens could get better on the offensive line via the NFL Draft. What chain of events would lead to that?
The Baltimore Ravens offensive line is a question mark this offseason and anybody who watched their playoff bout with the Chargers knows it. Matt Skura has had good moments as a Raven but the Ravens could use an upgrade. The same could be said about players like James Hurst and Alex Lewis. How can the Ravens fix the interior of their offensive line in the NFL Draft? Let’s find out.
The first thing we have to do is to identify the 1st round options. The Ravens could have two legitimate options at 22 in Garrett Bradbury and Cody Ford. Players like Elgton Jenkins and Erik McCoy could be in play, but the second round is their best value. With this in mind it becomes a battle of how do these two players get to the 22nd pick?
The Ravens have a problem, they are far from the only team that could justify spend their first round pick on an offensive lineman. Jawaan Taylor and Jonah Williams are going to come off the board relatively early. The Ravens, whose needs are on the inside of the line, have to hope some decision maker in front of them values Andre Dillard.
If offensive line is Plan A, Eric DeCosta can see offensive tackles go off the board; he just needs the interior prospects to fall. Outside of the top 10 there are several offensive needy teams. The Cincinnati Bengals, Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, Minnesota Vikings and Seattle Seahawks could all be in the Garrett Bradbury/Cody Ford market.
The Bengals have other needs as well and they are thought of a team that could be in the quarterback market. The Panthers could go a bunch of different ways. The Vikings would be the team most likely to pick an offensive lineman out of this slate of teams.
The Ravens have to hope these teams all go in another direction or they have to prepare to trade back if they really want an offensive linemen. If they don’t get Bradbury or Ford and they really want to scratch the itch in the first round, they’re looking at Chris Lindstrom or Erik McCoy.
The Ravens can get an offensive linemen one of two ways. It will either be an incredible value pick of a prospect that falls through the cracks, or it will be by trading back and taking a quality player near the end of the round.