Corey Meihls: J.K. Dobbins
I’m as shocked as anyone with what I’m about to say. I have to go with J.K. Dobbins as my favorite pick. I’ve only reached this conclusion by getting a little bit of space from the initial news of the pick. It’s also so hard to pick a favorite when I’m really high on Patrick Queen, Devin Duvernay, and James Proche. Still, here I am, in love with a running back pick from a team that already has two starting-caliber running backs in Mark Ingram and Gus Edward and a developing Justice Hill.
This offense is a running team, and a run-heavy team is never going to be finished with looking for running talent. Let’s all just accept that fact and get over it right now. The Ravens will draft a running back almost every draft for the foreseeable future because of their schemes, needs, and the fact that running backs get run into the ground quickly as it is; imagine how fast the tread wears on a running back in this new Ravens system with Lamar Jackson under center. So, after the initial mild shock of the Ravens scooping up Dobbins with their second pick, I started to smile. I smiled a lot.
First, here are the numbers and statistics: 2,003 yards rushing and 23 touchdowns in 2019. Dobbins averaged 6.7 YPC last year against Big-Ten defenses. Overall, Dobbins produced 4,459 rushing yards and 38 rushing TDs in three years with Ohio State. However, get this: Dobbins also had 71 receptions in his collegiate career for a total of 645 yards. That’s quite impressive for a guy that’s suppose to just pound the rock. It means he produces a lot of yards when he catches out of the backfield; almost a full down’s worth of yards every time, on average. 2019 was his most productive year catching the football, averaging 10.7 yards; so he isn’t dropping off as he enters the NFL. I like this versatility that Dobbins can bring to the backfield.
Now, here’s the X-factor: Dobbins is a freight train. At 5’9” and 209 lbs he rolls with the physics of a high-speed, giant bowling ball, with the leg strength of an elephant and the speed/finesse of a deer. If you’re a Ravens fan, you’re probably going to YouTube for highlights of these draft picks. Go check out J.K. Dobbins if you haven’t by now. You will see him run over and through defensive backs aplenty, and even some linebackers. Dobbins also has little issue shaking free from defensive players when they do get a hold of him. It’s amusing to see how many clips of him running with the ball end with a pile of opposing jerseys on top of him. Dobbins commands attention, and respect, when he gets the ball. He’s a genetic freak, to be honest; strong, fast, and angry. Want to know the best part? The Ravens will be using his talents almost every offensive snap.