The 3 most important Ravens draft picks since 2016
2. Marlon Humphrey
If we were just talking about the best players from the past four drafts, Humphrey would be number one. He is a player the Ravens have kind of built the defense around. The Ravens could have gone a number of ways in 2017 with the 16th pick. Marlon Humphrey wasn’t the obvious choice (I called it and I have the receipts) but he was the best choice. Humphrey entered his rookie season as an awesome player to pair with Jimmy Smith. Now he is the best cornerback in what could be the best secondary in the NFL.
The Ravens could have drafted O.J. Howard. The next year though, they drafted Hayden Hurst and Mark Andrews. Howard has had 60 receptions in two seasons. He is a good player and he could be a marquee tight end for a long time in the NFL. Andrews may end up being better than Howard. That worked out. Jonathan Allen would have been a nice pick. He had eight sacks last year for the Washington Redskins. Humphrey is a better player. Humphrey could be the best player on an elite. He could be a game changer. Allen is a good player, yet calling him a game changer seems a bit premature.
The strength of the 2019 Ravens is the secondary. The Ravens commitment to the secondary is proof that they know they have something special with Humphrey. They are building around him. That makes him a building block player. That makes him one of the three most important pieces of the team that have come through the draft.