A few thoughts as second round of draft nears

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After a quiet first round of the draft in which they traded their pick at No.29 to the Minnesota Vikings for the 35th pick (3rd overall in tonight's second round) and the 98th overall pick, the Ravens will be on the clock tonight probably at about 7:15 barring another trade.

By now, you are probably familiar with the names who could be available to them. You have wide receivers Stephen Hill (Georgia Tech) and Rueben Randle (LSU), guard Cordy Glenn (Georgia), tackles Jonathan Martin (Stanford) and Mike Adams (Ohio State), center Peter Konz (Wisconsin) and defensive end Courtney Upshaw (Alabama). A couple of other names probably worth keeping an eye on are guard Amini Silatolu (Midwestern State), defensive ends Andre Branch (Clemson) and Vinny Curry (Marshall).


The St. Louis Ramswill pick first tonight followed by the Indianapolis Colts. It wouldn't surprise me after they failed to get stud wide receiver Justin Blackmon in Round One if the Rams take Hill or Randle off the board with the first pick tonight. Then again, the Rams have so many needs, including offensive line, so that's just a guess on my part.

Then, the Colts are on the clock. Everybody seems to be projecting the Colts to grab Stanford tight end Coby Fleener to give Andrew Luck a familiar face and target. However, knowing new Colts head coach Chuck Pagano a little bit and how much he loves fast and physical defensive players, it wouldn't surprise me if Upshaw is the call.


If Hill and Upshaw are both off the board, my guess is the Ravens go with Glenn, but we'll just see how it plays out.

I do feel confident in saying that if the Ravens don't draft an offensive lineman with their first pick tonight, they will do it with their second pick of the second round. I suspect there will be a pretty steady run on offensive lineman in the second and early third round so if the Ravens wait until their late third-round pick to select a lineman, their options won't be great. Guards Jeff Allen (Illinois) and Brandon Brooks (Miami of Ohio) are two guys that would represent pretty good value as late second-round picks.

There were some rumblings before the draft that the Ravens actually were much higher on Wisconsin guard Kevin Zeitler than his college teammate, Konz. That was confirmed yesterday. The Ravens really liked Zeitler. They loved his durability, his toughness and his mean streak. As they like to say at The Castle, Zeitler "plays like a Raven." He ultimately was drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals two picks before the Ravens were initially on the clock. The more I think about it, I bet the Ravens would have stayed where they were and made the pick had Zeitler been on the board.

And one more thing to keep in mind about last night's trade: The Ravens now have the flexibility to move the fourth-round pick that they acquired in another deal. They didn't have that luxury with their other fourth rounder because it was a compensatory pick. Ravens General Manager Ozzie Newsome acknowledged yesterday that he could see packaging that pick with something else to get another selection in the second or third round. It sounded like the Ravens clearly had something in the works but I guess it depends on who is available on the board and if it's worth their while at the time to make a deal. Either way, it wouldn't surprise me if the Ravens make four picks tonight (two each in the second and third round) instead of three.