In the weeks leading up to April's NFL draft, I will highlight four players at each position whom the Ravens could target at different stages in the draft -- from their top pick to their Mr. Irrelevant. In this post, I will focus on wide receivers.
Remember, I'm not saying the Ravens will take a wideout with their first-round pick. I'm just giving you a player whom they might consider if they decided to go that route, and it is definitely a possibility with T.J. Houshmandzadeh and Donte’ Stallworth slated to become unrestricted free agents. Here are four wide receivers the Ravens could have in their sights:
Round 1: Torrey Smith, Maryland. The Ravens reportedly held a private workout for the speedy Maryland wideout, who is considered to be a fringe first-round prospect. Smith has elite athleticism and the fleet feet the Ravens need to stretch the field, and he can provide explosive plays in the return game, too. But concerns about his route-running and his small hands could give teams pause. Smith said in February that he “would be honored to wear the purple and black.” He should be there at pick No. 26 if the Ravens want to make it happen.
Rounds 2-3: Titus Young, Boise State. Young had a very productive career on the blue turf up in Boise, and he caught 150 passes for 2,256 yards and 19 touchdowns the past two seasons combined. His speed and slight build have led some to compare him to Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson. If the Ravens pass on taking a wide receiver such as Smith in the first round, Young might still be on the board late in the second.
Rounds 4-5: Cecil Shorts III, Mount Union. Shorts, who played receiver, cornerback and a little bit of quarterback at the Div. III level, is trying to follow former Mount Union standout Pierre Garcon to the NFL. He is quick, athletic and a savvy route runner, though there are always questions about small-school prospects. The Ravens haven’t shied away from under-the-radar players in recent years -- two examples are Lardarius Webb and Ramon Harewood -- and Ravens director of player personnel Eric DeCosta raved about his chat with Shorts.
Rounds 6-7: Kris Durham, Georgia. Durham didn't have a standout career at Georgia, but the 6-foot-5 wide receiver reportedly impressed scouts at his pro day when he ran a sub-4.5 40-yard dash. He averaged 20.6 yards per catch in his senior year and is said to be at his best when running downfield routes.
OK, your turn: Which player, if any, should the Ravens target at this position during draft weekend?