Offensive linemen and running backs worked out on day two of the NFL Combine and looked sharp. Who should the Baltimore Ravens have taken notice of?
The Baltimore Ravens didn’t need to pay as much attention during day two of the 2020 NFL Combine, as the team is set at both the offensive line and running backs spots. Still, that doesn’t mean they should’ve completely tuned out of the workouts.
Right now the Ravens are loaded at both spots, but on the flip side, both positions could become future needs based on retirement or pending Free Agency. Marshal Yanda is no lock to return for this season let alone past 2020. Even if Yanda returns, the interior of the offensive line could stand for some improvement. Gus Edwards is an unrestricted free agent after the 2020 season, too, and Mark Ingram has hit the dreaded age of 30-years old for a running back.
With all that in mind, the Ravens are still likely doing their due diligence with this class of offensive linemen and running backs. There was a lot of positive from today’s drills and these are some notes that I’ve personally taken for Baltimore:
- The Baltimore Ravens don’t have a need for an offensive tackle, but Losuiville’s Mekhi Becton stood out big-time at the Combine with a ridiculous 5.10 40-yard dash at 6’7″ 364-lbs. Becton is a massive human with some serious athleticism and should draw comparisons to Baltimore’s own Orlando Brown Jr.
- If the Ravens were to break the bank for an offensive lineman this year (something incredibly unlikely to happen), my bet is it would be on Iowa’s Tristan Wirfs. Wirfs was the biggest winner of day two of the 2020 NFL Combine and likely secured top-15 status for the 2020 NFL Draft. Wirfs had an otherwordly 4.85 40-yard dash time to go with offensive line records at the vertical jump (36.5″) and broad jump (121″, tied). Many have discussed moving Wirfs inside to guard, where he would be a Pro Bowl-caliber player. If Baltimore opted to move up for Wirfs he would be the team’s left guard from day one and a suitable replacement for Marshal Yanda’s eventual retirement.
- A name to know moving forward: Boise State offensive guard Ezra Cleveland. Cleveland has worked his way into perhaps a top-100 selection after a stellar Combine performance. In addition to his blazing 40-yard dash time (4.93 at 6’6″ 311-lbs.), Cleveland also put up 30 reps on the bench press and looked fluid in offensive line drills. Cleveland could be the ravens answer to their sixth offensive lineman should it cut James Hurst, who is serving a suspension for PEDs.
- There’s heavy debate as to who the best running back in the 2020 NFL Draft is but Wisconsin’s Jonathan Taylor made a strong case for himself on Friday night. Taylor, who was a high school all-state track star in New Jersey, ran a 4.39 40-yard dash at 226-lbs. In case you’re wondering, that’s insanely fast. The Ravens are no doubt set at running back and almost assuredly won’t use high draft capital on the position, but Taylor would be the guy to do it for if they did. Taylor’s resume is absolutely insane (over 6,000 rushing yards and 55 touchdowns in three seasons) and I have little doubt he’ll be a star at the next level. Taylor would be Baltimore’s future at the position if they opted to draft him.
- Florida State’s Cam Akers was also a standout from the running back group Friday night. Akers suffered from a pretty bad Seminoles roster during his three-years in Tallahassee but has all the tools to be more successful in the NFL. Akers had a solid 4.47 40-yard dash and threw up 20 reps on the bench press. In drills, Akers looked smooth and cut on a dime. After his Combine performance, Akers has likely put himself into day two contention, but if he slipped to day three of the 2020 NFL Draft he should be near the top of the board for the Ravens.
That’s all she wrote for day two of the 2020 NFL Combine. While it wasn’t pivotal for the Baltimore Ravens to dig in deep on the offensive line and running back workouts, hopefully, they took some decent notes for some potential late-round targets.