The Ravens drafted Coastal Carolina running back Lorenzo Taliaferro in the fourth round with the 138th overall pick.

Taliaferro is a big back at 6-foot-2, 230 pounds.


Taliaferro has drawn high marks for his power and tackle-breaking ability.

"I bring energy as well as a great work ethic," Taliaferro said during a conference call. "I think that I can move the ball between the tackles, short yardage. Whatever is asked, I'll do."

Taliaferro drew praise from Ravens assistant general manager Eric DeCosta during the Senior Bowl all-star game.

"He's a very physical runner, " Ravens director of college scouting Joe Hortiz said. "He's a versatile player who can run the ball. They use him in a variety of ways. They'll even flex him out on occasion, motion him out.

"He's got very good hands out of the backfield. He's a really outstanding pass protector. They run a lot of play-action fakes and set him right up to pick up a linebacker or defensive end. He's not afraid to step up. He's square. He's a good, hard, aggressive downhill runner."

The Ravens had said they wanted to add running backs after finishing 30th in the NFL in rushing last season.

Running back Ray Rice is coming off a career-worst 660-yard season, his lowest since becoming a regular starter. Rice is also facing a potential NFL suspension as he continues to deal with an aggravated assault charge in Atlantic City, N.J., a legal matter stemming from a physical altercation with his wife, Janay Palmer, whom he later married. Rice has applied for a pretrial diversion program and rejected a plea offer that wouldn't involve jail time.

"Obviously, Ray is pretty exceptional in all aspects of his game," Hortiz said. "Bernard is a big, physical, explosive runner. Bernard is fastern than Lorenzo. In terms of style, he's probably more of a downhill guy like Bernard, a one-cut runner, where Ray is going to be a little more elusive.

"In terms of his hands, he can go out there and catch with those guys. His pass protection, if he's on the field based on he plays in college. Now, he's going to need some technique work and NFL coaching. He'll be able to hold his own."

If Taliaferro is called upon to play right away, he expressed confidence that he can carry a heavy workload.

"I'd definitely be confident," Taliaferro said. "It's football. I've been doing it for a long time now."

Taliaferro was named the Big South Conference Offensive Player of the Year, gaining 1,729 yards last season and scoring 27 touchdowns.

He rushed for 115.3 yards per game.

Taliaferro ran a 4.58-second 40-yard dash at the NFL scouting combine, bench pressed 225 pounds 18 times and had a 33-inch vertical leap and was fifth among running backs in the three-cone drill with a time of 6.88 seconds.


He improved to a 34-inch vertical jump and 22 reps at his Pro Day.

"I think my speed is very underrated," Taliaferro said. "A lot of people don't understand that we ran power, power plays and a lot of mid-zones in our school. I was able to bust a bunch up the middle this year where I outran defenders. I think my speed was highly rated."



Read more here: http://www.myrtlebeachonline.com/2014/05/08/4215789/coastal-carolina-football-stars.html#storylink=cpy

Read more here: http://www.myrtlebeachonline.com/2014/05/08/4215789/coastal-carolina-football-stars.html#storylink=cpawilson@baltsun.ctwitter.com/RavensInsider

Recommended on Baltimore Sun