Ravens rookies already turning heads at OTAs is a promising sign

The Ravens have multiple quality young players at their disposal.
NFL Combine - Portraits
NFL Combine - Portraits / Todd Rosenberg/GettyImages

The Baltimore Ravens were heralded for compiling one of the best 2024 NFL Draft classes after drafting possible long-term starters on both sides of the ball. Landing Clemson cornerback Nate Wiggins at No. 30 overall and UNC wide receiver Devontez Walker in the fourth round were praised by the wide majority of draft analysts.

As the Ravens wrapped up their first set of OTA offseason workouts, the early reviews on these two prospects have been glowing. The Ravens could be lining both of them up for enhanced roles in their rookie seasons.

New defensive coordinator Zach Orr is very excited about what Wiggins can do. Orr praised Wiggins' football IQ, calling him "great in the classroom" and showering praise on his athletic ability. While he is just 20 years old and has a lot to learn, this is a strong endorsement.

Offensive coordinator Todd Monken was pleasantly surprised by Walker, tagging him a "quick learner" after throwing a very deep and complex playbook at him. Walker impressed Monken by being able to line up multiple spots within the offense and doing a terrific job of "executing the technique" Monken handed him.

Nate Wiggins, Devontez Walker impressing Baltimore Ravens coaches

Wiggins will likely be a starter in Baltimore's base five-DB defense, kicking one of either Brandon Stephens or Marlon Humphrey inside to the lot. With 4.28 speed and some of the best coverage statistics in the country last year, it makes sense as to why Baltimore is excited about him and ready to get him on the field as soon as possible.

Stephens and Humphrey were a solid 1-2 punch at cornerback, and Arthur Maulet is a proven playmaker, but adding Wiggins and one of the NFL Draft's truly great steals in T.J. Tampa alongside gives Baltimore a sustainably well of talent for the future on the defensive side.

Walker will likely enter the season as the No. 4 wide receiver on the depth chart behind emerging star Zay Flowers, recently resigned Rashod Bateman, and veteran downfield threat Nelson Agholor. The most likely path to playing time for Walker is to gradually take snaps away from Agholor as the season progresses.

Walker showing solid versatility and nuance is worth taking note of, as one of the criticisms of him as a college player was that he had a limited route tree and struggled with route running. If he can get open on shorter routes and use his speed to beat his man downfield, he will have a long career in Monken's offense.