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Former Raven Jamie Sharper Remembers Draft Day


It's always fun to watch the NFL draft with a big family. Just ask former Ravens linebacker Jaime Sharper.

Sharper and his brother, former Green Bay Packers safety Darren Sharper, were both selected in the second round of the 1997 NFL Draft.

They watched it together (with about 30 family members) in their family living room in Richmond, Va., and look back on it as one of the greatest moments of their lives.

This year, fans can watch the first round of the draft with Sharper and the extended Ravens family at the Drafty Party at M&T Bank Stadium on May 8 (purchase your tickets now). Sharper is one of seven confirmed Baltimore Football Alumni members who will attend and sign autographs.

"It was just fun to have a family reunion basically," Sharper said, recalling his draft day. "They were all there to see two sons realize their dreams. Being able to have Darren there and being drafted at the same time was a culmination of all of our years of playing football together."

Jamie, 39, was drafted No. 34 overall in 1997. A year after drafting Ray Lewis, the Ravens were still bolstering their defense. Sharper was one of several highly regarded Virginia players in the draft. His younger brother was a touted prospect out of William & Mary.

The brothers figured Jamie would be the higher pick. They never considered the possibility of being on the same team, but that almost became a reality.

After selecting Jamie at No. 34, the Ravens picked safety Kim Herring with pick No. 58. Darren went two picks later to the Green Bay Packers. Marvin Lewis, who was the Ravens' defensive coordinator at the time, said Baltimore considered taking both brothers.

"The Ravens ended up drafting Kim because he played at a bigger school and in a bigger conference," Jamie said. "We definitely would have enjoyed that."

Jamie actually has a good understanding of this year's draft. After his nine-year career ended in 2005, he dabbled in investments and marketing, but is now seeking a job as an NFL scout. He was at this year's combine and has talked to Ravens front office members among others about landing back in the league.

He lives in Houston, but is eager to visit with Ravens fans, some of who may remember his interception in Super Bowl XXXV.

"I always enjoy coming back to Baltimore," Jamie said. "Me living in Texas now, I don't see too many Ravens fans here, but they all know I played for the Ravens and that's where I won my championship. So they respect that."

Learn more about the Ravens’ draft party, including autograph sessions and  Ravens players expected to be in attendance.

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