The Ravens have a handful of needs. Most are not pressing. They have yet to address the offensive line this offseason and will be forced to do it in the draft. Even with the emergence of Torrey Smith a year ago, they are looking for another game-changer at wide receiver. Terrell Suggs lacks a true sidekick. And then there is the annual question about whether this is the year they need to prepare for life after Ray Lewis and Ed Reed. In my fifth and final first-round mock draft, I give you a semi-educated guess at whom the Ravens will select with the 29th pick. Is it still Wisconsin center Peter Konz? Read on to find out.
The Ravens could use their 29th overall draft pick in next Thursday's first round on a guard or they could just as easily sign one of the available free agents at the position. Reid, however, isn't spending a whole lot of time thinking about either scenario. He's too busy trying to earn the position for himself.
The 2012 NFL draft is now just over a week away. Free agency has died down, and teams are shifting their focus to the draft to round out their rosters. The Ravens are no exception. Their primary needs are still the same as they were entering the offseason: offensive line help, a pass rusher and a receiver. This mock draft -- the fourth of five I will do before the draft -- doesn't account for trades. And remember, these are called "mock" drafts for a reason. Try not to take them too seriously, folks.
The Ravens lost an ironman and a fan favorite when outside linebacker Jarret Johnson signed a four-year, $19 million deal with the San Diego Chargers last month. Since then, head coach John Harbaugh has twice hyped up Paul Kruger, who in his fourth season is the favorite to land the starting spot that had belonged to Johnson.
The 2012 NFL draft is three weeks away, and though most teams have solidified their draft boards barring a few tweaks after prospects visit, the "silly season" of draft rumors is really starting to heat up. Need an example? How about the rumblings that the Colts are undecided about the first pick? But hey, I love mock drafts as much as you do, so allow me to contribute to the silly season with my third mock draft of the offseason.
As we head into Week Four of free agency, it's probably a good time to point out that the Ravens are currently just $1.75 million under the salary cap, which is probably right around the amount of money that they're going to need to pay their draft picks.
"We have to upgrade the offensive line," Ravens coach John Harbaugh saud during the owners meetings Tuesday at The Breakers hotel in Palm Beach, Fla. "I don't even know if we have a full complement of linemen to be on our 53-man roster right now."
Maybe it's because I was a star mathlete in high school, but I love numbers. And we've spent plenty of time crunching them these past 10 days while waiting for the Ravens to make moves -- or purposefully not make moves -- in the new league year. So if you're a fan of numbers, here is a handful of relevant numbers from this quiet free-agency period, at least in Baltimore.
After a wild first week in free agency that was punctuated with Peyton Manning signing with the Denver Broncos, we have a better idea of what needs teams will address in April's NFL draft. So now seems like a good time for our second mock draft of the offseason. (This mock draft does not account for potential trades.) And remember, these are called "mock" drafts for a reason. Try not to take them too seriously.
Free agent defensive end Mark Anderson, who had 12 1/2 sacks in 19 games for the New England Patriots last season, was at the Ravens complex in Owings Mills today to meet with team officials, according to league sources.
The Ravens saw two starters leave in free agency Wednesday and could lose guard Ben Grubbs as well. Outside linebacker Jarret Johnson signed with the Chargers, and defensive end Cory Redding landed with the Colts.
Productive pass rushers such as Mario Williams of the Houston Texans usually don't become free agents while they are in the prime -- the most recent example was Julius Peppers, who signed with the Chicago Bears two offseasons ago.
The Ravens would like to improve their offensive line during the offseason, but the best move they could make in free agency would be re-signing Ben Grubbs, who could soon be one of the top guards available.