Taking their second player from Ohio State in this year's draft, the Ravens chose inside linebacker Malik Harrison with the 98th-overall pick.
Harrison is a big, physical, athletic linebacker who can be paired with first-round pick Patrick Queen from LSU to strengthen Baltimore's interior linebacker group. Harrison had 75 tackles at Ohio State last year, including 16.5 tackles for loss.
The Ravens lost inside linebackers Josh Bynes and Patrick Onwausor during free agency, and they have committed to getting faster overall defensively. Harrison had 4.5 sacks as a senior, showing his capability as a blitzer, which the Ravens will surely look to utilize. His best attribute may be his ability to shut down the run. At 6-foot-3, 247 pounds, Harrison is a good complement to the 6-foot-0 speedster in Queen.
"Malik's just different, he's a big guy. You don't get a lot of big linebackers anymore in college football," Ravens General Manager Eric DeCosta said. "He's almost 250 pounds, he's got long arms, he takes guys on really well, he's really strong in the box. He's a guy that really looks like an NFL linebacker."
Harrison has a combination of size and speed, and some scouts believe he will be versatile enough to take snaps at both inside and outside linebacker in the NFL. In Defensive Coordinator Wink Martindale's scheme, the Ravens will surely look to take advantage of Harrison's flexibility.
"We don't play that way where we just lock guys into position," Head Coach John Harbaugh said. "We move guys around quite a lot. I don't feel like we'll be limited at all."
Harrison was a quarterback in high school and his relentless pursuit and physicality made him one of the Buckeye's most valuable players. Earlier in the draft, the Ravens took Harrison's college teammate, running back J.K. Dobbins, with the 55th-overall pick in the second round.