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Ravens draft history: Best and worst WR picks

The Ravens found a contributing WR in the fifth round in 1996. Most of their picks at receiver since then have

Who were the best picks and biggest mistakes in the Ravens' 20 years of drafts? Columnist Mike Preston will break it down by position over the next two weeks. Today he tackles wide receivers...

Best pick: Many will pick Torrey Smith, the second round pick out of the University of Maryland in 2011. In five seasons with the Ravens, Smith had 213 receptions for 3,591 yards and 30 touchdowns. But the best bargain the Ravens ever got was selecting another University of Maryland wide receiver, Jermaine Lewis, in the fifth round of the 1996 draft. Not only did Lewis have 143 receptions for 2,129 yards and 17 touchdowns in six years as a Raven, he was a two time Pro Bowl punter returning including six for touchdowns. In 1997, Lewis averaged 15.6 yards per punt return and 16.1 in 2000, the year the Ravens won the Super Bowl. He was a mismatch for any defense because few cornerbacks could run with him on the outside and No. 3 cornerbacks and safeties couldn't cover him in the slot.

Biggest mistake: Where do we begin? The receiver position has been the Ravens' Achilles heel in the draft. But the biggest bust, and the team's first, was Florida receiver Travis Taylor, whom the Ravens selected No. 10 in the first round of the 2000 draft, five slots after running back Jamal Lewis. Taylor had numerous opportunities during his five seasons in Baltimore, but his best year came in 2002 when he had 61 catches for 869 yards and six touchdowns. Two years later, the Ravens released him after a 34-catch, 421-yard performance in 2004. The Ravens made another mistake by taking Oklahoma receiver Mark Clayton with the No. 22 overall pick in 2005, and Patrick Johnson was a second-round disappointment in 2004. Breshad Perriman is on the watch list this season after missing all of 2015 with a knee injury. Perriman was the Ravens' first round selection last season.

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