When the Ravens selected Marlon Humphrey in the first round last year, they raved about his athleticism.
This year, Baltimore got Humphrey’s buddy and fellow Alabama cornerback Anthony Averett* *in the fourth round, and he’s even faster.
Baltimore selected Averett with its first fourth-round selection (No. 118 overall). General Manager Ozzie Newsome said he was the team's highest-rated player on the board when they made the pick.
Averett was “locker buddies” with Humphrey. The two starred at Alabama together for two seasons and talked several times during the pre-draft process about reuniting.
“It’s going to be like old times,” Averett said.
“That’s what they were teasing me about when they [called] me, talking about Marlon like, ‘Are you still faster than him?’ Me and him are going to be happy playing both sides.”
While teaming up with Humphrey in 2016, Averett was the defensive MVP of Alabama’s national semifinal win over Washington. He posted eight tackles, a sack and forced fumble.
After Humphrey left, Averett started all 14 games last year and made 48 stops, four for loss, an interception, and eight pass breakups.
Standing in at 5-foot-11, 183 pounds, Averett is an elite athlete. He posted the nation’s top high school long jump mark as a junior (25 feet, two inches) and won New Jersey state titles in the 55-meter dash and high jump.
Not surprisingly, he lit up the NFL Scouting Combine. His 40-yard dash time of 4.36 seconds was the seventh-fastest time of any prospect. Humphrey ran it in 4.41 seconds.
“I’m definitely the track star [between us],” Averett said. “He can do the 400, but I’m more on the sprinter side.”
One of the biggest knocks on Averett is his size. He stands in at 5-foot-11, 183 pounds.
“It doesn’t really matter,” Averett said when asked about his smaller stature. “I played in the SEC against big, tall, fast, small. It didn’t matter who I was sticking, I felt like I had great numbers against the best of them.”
Beyond his Alabama connection, Averett is also the nephew of former Ravens left tackle Bryant McKinnie (2011-2013), who helped Baltimore win Super Bowl XLVII.
“Hey man, I feel right at home with them drafting me,” Averett said.