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Position draft analysis: Defensive line

Each day leading up to the NFL draft, The Sun will analyze a position on the Ravens and rank its priority:

Defensive line

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Where the Ravens stand now: The Ravens' starting front three are: Haloti Ngata, Kelly Gregg and Cory Redding. Ngata reached his first Pro Bowl, Gregg has dealt with surgeries the past two seasons and Redding was a late signing in free agency (to replace Dwan Edwards, who joined Buffalo as a free agent). Trevor Pryce, a former starter, plays on passing situations. The Ravens need developing linemen, nose tackle Brandon McKinney and tackle Lamar Divens, to step up.

Defensive lineman who could be on Ravens' radar: NT Dan Williams, Tennessee (first round); DT Jared Odrick, Penn State (first round); DE Tyson Alualu, California (first or second round); DE Brian Price, UCLA (first or second round); NT Terrence Cody, Alabama (second round); NT Torrell Troup, Central Florida (third or fourth round); DT Lorenzo Washington, Alabama (fifth or sixth round); NT Kade Weston, Georgia (fifth or sixth round).

Priority: Moderate to high. The only lineman guaranteed to be with the Ravens over the next five seasons is Ngata. The Ravens have shown interest in adding a nose tackle who could compete with Gregg for the starting job this year and perhaps take over in 2011. The team could also add a defensive end who would be an upgrade over Redding and allow the Ravens to release Pryce (who is scheduled to make $4.5 million this season).

So, it wouldn't shock anyone if the Ravens used their first or second round pick on a defensive lineman. The two nose tackles who would make immediate impacts are Williams and Cody. Odrick and Alualu would fit the defensive style of the Ravens.

Other top-rated defensive linemen in the draft: Ndamukong Suh, Nebraska; Gerald McCoy, Oklahoma; Jason Pierre-Paul, South Florida; Derrick Morgan, Georgia Tech; Carlos Dunlap, Florida; Lamarr Houston, Texas.

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