Round 1 (16) – TE Hayden Hurst, South Carolina
Tight end is the Ravens’ biggest glaring need and Hurst is the best of the bunch. But the Ravens won’t stretch for need, I don’t think he would be the pick at No. 16, as it’s very possible that Baltimore trades back and grabs the class’s top tight end closer to the end of the first round. Hurst is a former minor league baseball pitcher (drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates) who has the athleticism and grit Baltimore is looking for at the position. He will make many contested catches over the middle while still contributing as a willing blocker.
Round 2 (52) – OT Orlando Brown, Oklahoma
The Ravens are a team that trusts the tape. Brown’s horrendous NFL Scouting* *Combine performance sent him tumbling down mock drafts, where he was once a popular first-round selection for Baltimore. But the Ravens see a massive 6-foot-9 human being who is tough for any defender to get around. Brown has the passion, and with time in the weight room and coaching could be special.
Round 3 (83) – WR DaeSean Hamilton, Penn State
Hamilton screams Raven. He is a hard-working, high character player who became a stronger person after hardships in his childhood. He was a four-year starter who left as Penn State’s all-time receptions leader. Hamilton shined at the Senior Bowl with his precise route-running and soft hands.
Round 4 (118) – C Mason Cole, Michigan
Baltimore needs interior line help with Ryan Jensen departing in free agency. Cole comes from Michigan, so Head Coach John Harbaugh certainly has some good intelligence on him from his brother, Jim, the head football coach for the Wolverines. Cole is big (6-foot-4, 307 pounds) and versatile. He started his college career at left tackle before moving inside to center. His NFL comparison? Jensen.
Round 5 (154) – ILB Skai Moore, South Carolina
Moore doesn’t have prototypical size for an inside linebacker, but the Ravens have ignored that criticism before (see Ray Lewis). What he does possess is fantastic instincts, which led to a whopping 14 interceptions during his four seasons. He was a four-year leader in tackles for the Gamecocks and could fit in nicely next to C.J. Mosley and on special teams.
Round 6 (190) – WR Daurice Fountain, Northern Iowa
Fountain had a monster senior campaign with 66 receptions for 943 yards and 12 touchdowns. That was good enough to get him an invite to the East-West Shrine Game, where he earned MVP honors. A state champion hurdler and long jumper, he has the size and athleticism to become a late-round steal.
Round 6 (215) – QB Kurt Benkert, Virginia
The Ravens could still use a developmental quarterback to challenge as the backup. Benkert has A-plus arm strength and showed at the Senior Bowl that he can make plays on the move. His decision making was spotty in college, but he’s a player that can be groomed.
Round 7 (238) – CB Amari Coleman, Central Michigan
Baltimore can never have too many cornerbacks. Coleman is a 5-foot-11 gifted athlete who played outside and was one of the top cornerbacks in the MAC. He has a knack for making plays, evidenced by his eight career interceptions and three touchdowns. He can also return kicks and punts.
Round (No. 16) - WR D.J. Moore, Maryland
Even after adding three receivers in free agency, the Ravens are still in the market for a young pass catcher who can develop into a long-term solution at the position. Moore has the tools to be that playmaker. He caught a school-record 80 passes last year playing down the road in College Park, even though Maryland cycled through four quarterbacks during the season. Moore is an athletic pass catcher who doesn’t shy away from contact when he gets the ball in his hands, and he may be the draft’s best receiver.
Round 2 (No. 52) – TE Mike Gesicki, Penn State
The most glaring need still on the roster may be a receiving tight end, and Gesicki would fill that void. He’s an impressive athlete who lit up the NFL Scouting Combine. His speed makes him a matchup problem for many linebackers, and he has a good feel for the end zone. Gesicki caught 14 touchdowns over the last two seasons, and he would give the Ravens a valuable red-zone threat.
Round 3 (No. 83) – OT Geron Christian, Louisville
At 6-foot-6, 318 pounds, Christian has plenty of size to play at the NFL level. He played both right tackle and left tackle in college, and could potentially step into a starting lineup his rookie season. The former prep basketball star moved well, but he could also benefit from some time in the weight room. A big question is whether Christian slides to this point of the draft, as teams don’t seem to have any consensus on the top tackles in this year’s class.
Round 4 (No. 118) – LB Shaqem Griffin, UCF
Griffin stole the show at the Combine this year. He received a late invitation, but then caught everyone’s attention by running the 40-yard dash in 4.38 seconds and putting up 20 reps in the bench press. The performance on the bench was so impressive because Griffin is missing his left hand. Despite the disability, Griffin shined at UCF and his story of overcoming adversity will be one of the best of draft weekend.
Round 5 (No. 154) – C Mason Cole, Michigan
The Ravens are in the market for a center after Ryan Jensen departed in free agency. Cole fits the bill as a versatile lineman who started all four years at Michigan. The Ravens will certainly have good intel on Cole from Jim Harbaugh, and would enter one of the most interesting position battles of the summer
Round 6 (No. 190) – QB Riley Ferguson, Memphis
The Ravens would like to find a young backup for Joe Flacco, and Ferguson could fit the bill. He was a highly recruited player out of high school who initially went to Tennessee. The stint in Knoxville didn’t work out, so Ferguson ultimately transferred to Memphis where he threw for 3,600 yards and 36 touchdowns last year.
Round 6 (No. 215) – DT Poona Ford, Texas
Ford is a big body who is tough to move. At 6-foot-0, 305 pounds, Ford is built in a similar mold to Baltimore’s Michael Pierce. He was a quality player at a major college football program, and he would provide additional depth in the middle of the defense.
Round 7 (No. 238) – WR Quadree Henderson, Pitt
The Ravens need a returner after Michael Campanaro joined the Tennessee Titans, and Henderson was an All-American return man in college. He’s from just up Interstate-95 in Wilmington, Delaware, and he set the Pitt school record with seven return touchdowns. He’s a project on offense, but the Ravens value special teams in the late rounds.