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Late for Work: Pundits' Selections for Favorite Ravens Draft Pick Are Scattered

Iowa State defensive back T.J. Tampa (2) gets set for a play during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Oklahoma State, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2023, in Ames, Iowa.
Iowa State defensive back T.J. Tampa (2) gets set for a play during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Oklahoma State, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2023, in Ames, Iowa.

Favorite Ravens Pick of 2024 NFL Draft

As pundits look over the Ravens' 2024 draft class, they're finding a lot to be excited about. Rather than a consensus, pundits were scattered with their favorite picks – for good reason.

The Athletic's Jeff Zrebiec: OLB Adisa Isaac

"The Ravens certainly have a type, particularly on the defensive side of the ball. And yes, Isaac, who had a strong final season at Penn State, plays like a Raven. Isaac also grew up with three non-verbal siblings. Projected by some to be off the board by the mid-second round, Isaac fell to the Ravens late in the third. He should bring juice to a pass rush that lost Jadeveon Clowney in the offseason. Isaac has enticing pass-rushing traits and plays with an exciting combination of energy and aggression."

USA Today’s Doug Farrar: CB T.J. Tampa

"The Ravens absolutely stole T.J. Tampa in the fourth round (how did the Buccaneers not take this guy?), and in terms of locking receivers down, that might be the sleeper pick. Tampa allowed an opponent passer rating of 54.8 last season."

"Best Pick: Fourth-round corner T.J. Tampa will prove to be really good pick. He can play the corner, but I also think he can move inside to safety. Versatility is huge in the Ravens defense."

Baltimore Beatdown’s Vasilis Lericos: WR Devontez Walker

"Tez Walker is the choice for me. Not only was he a tremendous value pick in the fourth round at a top-three needy position, his skillset complements the returning players in the wide receiver room beautifully. … With the measurables and ball tracking to win outside the numbers on vertical passing plays, Walker just may be the elixir to expanding the passing offense to a championship level, either by stretching the defense to create space for the tight ends to operate or by making defenses pay the price for devoting too many resources towards slowing the Lamar and Derrick Henry rushing threat."

Touchdownwire’s Jeff Risdon: CB Nate Wiggins

"Wiggins brings length, outstanding speed, ball production and a cocksure presence on the outside. While he's hyper-skinny and needs to show a little more dawg at times, his desire to match up with the best receiver should fit the Ravens secondary quite well. First-round mindset makes a difference and the Ravens tend to identify that trait well."

Baltimore Beatdown’s Zach Canter: Wiggins

"It has to be the clear and obvious choice of the first-round pick. As a cornerback guy, I've been asking for a first-round corner since Derek Stingley in 2022 and Deonte Banks in 2023. Even though Nate Wiggins wasn't the corner I was envisioning, the more I read about him and hear from the team, the more it makes sense. The speed is electric, the coverage is nearly flawless, and he plays as physical as a Raven. Throw in a nutrition and strength plan for a kid who's only 20 years old, I can't find the downside."

Baltimore Beatdown's Joshua Reed: OT Roger Rosengarten

"My favorite pick by the Ravens is second-round offensive tackle Roger Rosengarten out of Washington because of all he can be in both the immediate and long-term future. He spent his last two seasons in college at right tackle despite being a blindside protector by trade but since the Huskies' starting quarterback was left-handed, his coaches had him flip sides. Rosengarten will compete with 2022 fourth-rounder Daniel Faalele for the starting right tackle spot as a rookie and is poised to win it as the better scheme fit of the two given his agility in space and pass protection prowess having not given up a sack in college. With former All-Pro Ronnie Stanley entering the final year of his reworked contract, there's a chance Rosengarten could wind up back on the left side as his eventual successor to be Lamar Jackson's starting blindside protector."

Ravens Aren't Done Constructing Their Roster

Though the Ravens have had a busy offseason already with big-name signings in free agency, savvy additions and a highly-graded draft, pundits such as’s Gregg Rosenthal are waiting for more shoes to drop.

"It's foolish to ever question the Ravens' team-building process. That said, they had a lot of needs that couldn't be met with one draft. Their top two picks, cornerback Nate Wiggins (No. 30 overall) and tackle Roger Rosengarten (No. 62), probably need to play right away because of depth-chart shortcomings," Rosenthal wrote. "There's room for a few of the Ravens' patented summertime free agency signings to contribute immediately along the defensive line, at linebacker and possibly at wideout."

Zrebiec was another pundit to wisely wait what's to come over the next few months before passing judgement on the roster.

"The Ravens still have roster questions. DeCosta acknowledged as much after the draft. When 14 unrestricted free agents depart, you are going to have some potential roster shortcomings that a nine-player rookie class can't change," Zrebiec wrote. "However, DeCosta did his best work last year late in the offseason and even during training camp, when he added veterans like Arthur Maulet, Ronald Darby and Clowney. He then signed Kyle Van Noy after Week 3 of the regular season. He'll need to hit on a couple of veterans again in the coming months. Still, every team has question marks in late April. The Ravens don't have any gaping holes, and they still have one of the better rosters in football. With a few additional veteran signings, there's no reason to think that the Ravens won't be one of the handful of contenders in the AFC."

Projected Roles for Ravens Rookies

The Ravens came away with nine draft picks, but what are their expected roles in the immediate future and beyond? Baltimore Positive’s Luke Jones gave his early projections of what he expects to see from their rookie class.

Nate Wiggins, CB, Clemson

"2024 projected role: Baltimore has traditionally brought its first-round rookie corners along slowly, but working the speedy Wiggins into some sub packages as the top reserve behind outside starters Marlon Humphrey and Brandon Stephens is the immediate expectation.

"Long-term outlook: Other than adding bulk to his slight 6-foot-1, 182-pound frame, Wiggins is the entire package with the ability to press receivers and react quickly in off-coverage. With Stephens entering a contract year and Humphrey coming off an injury-plagued 2023 and carrying the Ravens' second-highest salary cap number, Wiggins becoming the No. 1 corner in the next year or two isn't out of the question."

Roger Rosengarten, OT, Washington

"2024 projected role: Finding impactful rookie offensive line starters beyond the top 20 picks is rare, but Rosengarten being a plug-and-play right tackle would go a long way toward quelling concerns about an offensive line that lost three starters from last season.

"Long-term outlook: Despite short arms for the right tackle position and a need to get stronger, Rosengarten has the quickness and feet to succeed in pass protection and in Todd Monken's offense that uses more zone blocking. Wiggins is the top player in Baltimore's draft class, but Rosengarten becoming a dependable multiyear starter would go a long way in fortifying the perception of this group."

OLB Adisa Isaac

"2024 projected role: Considering the lack of proven options behind Kyle Van Noy and Odafe Oweh, the race for rotation snaps is wide open for a 6-foot-4, 253-pound edge rusher who played extensively over four seasons in the Big Ten and collected 7 1/2 sacks last season.

"Long-term outlook: Penn State teammate Chop Robinson has a higher ceiling and was taken in the first round by Miami, but Isaac has the traits to become a starting edge defender, especially if he can add strength while maintaining his explosiveness. Outside linebacker has been an annual need since the departure of Terrell Suggs, and Isaac has the ability to be an impact contributor over the next four years."

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Yesterday's Most Read: Ravens' Full 2024 Draft Class

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