Wisconsin offensive tackle Rob Havenstein, a Mount Airy native, is hoping for an NFL career as he practices this week at the Senior Bowl all-star game. Projected anywhere from the fourth to the fifth round by NFL scouts and draft analysts, Havenstein's roots go back to playing at Linganore.
He walked onto the football team at Wisconsin, his home state university, as a tight end, but outgrew the position and moved to offensive tackle. In a program known for producing NFL offensive linemen, Wagner protected future Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson's blind side and created holes for future Denver Broncos running back Montee Ball.
Now that Ravens reporter Matt Vensel has had a couple of days to defragment his brain after a hectic NFL draft weekend, he figured he would hand out superlative style-evaluations of the Baltimore Ravens' eight-player draft class. These are just the opinions of one man (though it's a man who spent much of the past two months researching draft prospects).
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.
Each day this week leading up to Thursday's NFL draft, we will highlight one prospect whom the Ravens could draft with the 29th overall pick. Today's player is Wisconsin guard Kevin Zeitler, who started 36 games at right guard for the Badgers. He is seen as the draft's second-best guard behind Stanford¿s David DeCastro.
In advance of the first round of the 2012 NFL draft, Baltimore Sun columnist Mike Preston gives his take on six college prospects who are linked to the Ravensin the latest mock drafts from prominent national analysts.
I love mocking, which is why I have produced five first-round mock drafts in the past two months (and it's why I have greeted your criticism of said mock drafts with an aw-shucks shrug of the shoulders). In my latest first-round mock, which was released Tuesday night, I had the Baltimore Ravens selecting Alabama Crimson Tide linebacker Dont'a Hightower with the 29th pick in the NFL draft. Why stop there? How about I project all eight of their picks?
In a couple of our recent NFL draft stories, we quoted Matt Williamson of ESPN's Scouts Inc. Williamson is a former scout for the Cleveland Browns who now evaluates current NFL players and college draft prospects for ESPN.com. He and I had a long conversation about the Ravens and their draft needs two weeks ago. Instead of focusing on just a few things that I asked Williamson about, here is the transcript of our entire conversation.
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.
For Peter Konz, at least, it's by offering a quick fix and a long-term answer. With left guard Ben Grubbs off to New Orleans, the Ravens need immediate help at one interior line position. With center Matt Birk's uncertain future, they'll need help at another before long.
Each day this week leading up to Thursday's NFL draft, we will highlight one prospect whom the Ravens could draft with the 29th overall pick. Today's player is Wisconsin center Peter Konz. Konz, who declared for the draft after his junior season, is widely viewed as the draft¿s consensus top center.
Every weekday through Wednesday, the day before the first round of the NFL draft, The Sun will examine where the Ravens stand at each position, the likelihood that they will address that spot early in the draft and some of the prospects that they may consider. Today, we'll examine the offensive line:
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 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 the clock ticks down to the 2012 NFL draft -- Round 1 is on the night of April 29 -- let's take a look at which draft prospects the Ravens are being linked to in recent mock drafts from national analysts.
"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."
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.