2012 NFL Draft - Baltimore Ravens

Posted Apr 28, 2012

Baltimore Ravens - AFC North, 2012 Draft Selections & Prospects

Baltimore Ravens

2012 NFL Draft Team Analysis - AFC
EAST Buffalo | Miami | New England | NY Jets
WEST Denver | Kansas CityOakland | San Diego
NORTH Baltimore | Cincinnati  Cleveland | Pittsburgh
SOUTH Houston | Indy | Jacksonville | Tennessee

2012 NFL Draft Team Analysis - NFC
EAST Dallas | NY Giants | Philadelphia | Washington
WEST Arizona | San Francisco | Seattle | St. Louis
NORTH Chicago | Detroit | Green Bay | Minnesota
SOUTH Atlanta | Carolina | New Orleans | Tampa Bay   

- 2011 Baltimore Draft Breakdown
- 2010 Baltimore Draft Breakdown 

The Draft Was ... okay, but the Ravens didn't get any great values. Courtney Upshaw is a Baltimore-like defensive end who should help out Terrell Suggs on the other side, while the offensive interior was addressed with Kelechi Osemele in the second and Gino Gradkowski in the fourth. RB Bernard Pierce was a great pick in the third to use as a part of a rotation, while lightning-fast WR Tommy Streeter was an interesting chance worth taking in the sixth.
Best Value Pick: WR Tommy Streeter, Miami, 7th round
Worst Value Pick: OG Gino Gradkowski, Delaware, 4th round
They Should've ... taken Ben Jones in the third. Fine, so Gradkowski was growing into a hot prospect, but the Ravens still paid a ton to get him iwht the 98th overall pick. Jones, a center out of Georgia, would've been a much safer, much more effective pick.
Division Draft Ranking: 4
Overall Draft Ranking: 8

Second Round

OLB Courtney Upshaw, Alabama 6-2, 272
Overall Pick No. 35 CFN Overall Ranking: 26
CFN Analysis: Ykes. There are some teams that can find defensive stars and know what to do with them. Upshaw might be a bit of a tweener, but he's exactly what the Ravens need to work on the other side of Terrell Suggs and make the great defense a lot younger in a hurry. A first-round talent, now Upshaw gets to make the rich defense even richer. He might have been made he didn't go earlier, but there's no complaining about where he ended up.

Part defensive end, part outside linebacker, Upshaw fits a variety of roles and schemes. While his 22 reps on the bench at the Combine were slightly underwhelming, he plays strong, hits big, and he's a true intimidator with the right attitude and mentality. While he's a warrior who's always going 100 miles per hour on the field, he didn't exactly go full bore in Indy, and it was noted. He looks the part, but he doesn't always play like an end and can be blocked with a tough time disengaging. He's a tweener of sorts, but he's not quite athletic enough to be a speed rusher who can fly into the backfield on a regular basis. Even so, with his intensity and style he'll be a tough defender on the outside for the next decade.
CFN Projection: First Round 

Second Round

OG/OT Kelechi Osemele, Iowa State 6-5, 333
Overall Pick No. 60 CFN Overall Ranking: 51
CFN Analysis: The versatility will be the key. He's a mauler who fits exactly what Baltimore likes to do with its running game as a starter right away at guard or as a backup tackle. With his size and his nastiness he should be a blaster and he fills a huge hole. The Ravens needed lots and lots of bodies for the line coming into the draft, and Osmele should be the first step.

It seems like most scouts want to kick him inside to guard right away, and he could end up spending most of his time as a left guard, but he's proven on the outside. He showed during Senior Bowl week that he at least has to be given a look at left tackle and needs to be given every opportunity on the right side. Very big and very strong, he's a true mauler who beats up his man when he locks on. While he has proven he could play at a high level, he has to bring it on every snap in every game and he might have to be consistently pushed. Staying in shape will be a constant fight with his bulk determining where he can play, and it's not a lock that he's not going to gain bad weight in a big hurry if he slips. The talent is there, but he has to want to be great.
CFN Projection: Second Round

Third Round

RB Bernard Pierce, Temple (Jr.) 6-0, 218
Overall Pick No. 84 CFN Overall Ranking: 138
CFN Analysis: Pierce might have landed on the perfect team for him. He's never going to be able to hold up as a workhorse, and with Ray Rice the main man running the ball, he doesn't have to be. A bigger body to be part of a rotation, he should be able to contribute with a drive here and there to keep the franchise back fresh, but he's not going to be a third down back.

With great size and tremendous speed, checking in around the mid-4.4s, he has the tools and the athleticism to be an intriguing prospect. Already good-sized for an NFL back, he could get up to 230 without a problem and could define himself as a between-the-tackles workhorse – at least for a little while. He took a beating at Temple and can't be counted on week-in-and-week-out; he'll always, always be on the injury report and has to be closely monitored after concussion problems. Even with the concerns and with his lack of receiving skills, the potential is there to be a flash of lightning for a stretch. He could be this year's DeMarco Murray with one or two monster games before spending time in a warm-up suit. A lot of the tools are there, but there are enough red flags to let someone else take a chance.
CFN Projection: Fourth Round

Fourth Round

OG Gino Gradkowski, Delaware 6-3, 295
Overall Pick No. 98 CFN Overall Ranking: Unranked
CFN Analysis: An undersized, underpowered guard, he's athletic and he's a tremendous fighter, but he isn't going to blast anyone at the next level. He'll always give an honest day's work and he'll do whatever is needed to improve and become a factor, but he doesn't have much room to get any bigger. The brother of former Toledo quarterback Bruce Gradkowski is a football player, but there's a hard ceiling on what he can do.
CFN Projection: Free Agent

Fourth Round

S Christian Thompson, SC State (FS) 6-0, 211
Overall Pick No. 130 CFN Overall Ranking: 169

He might have a small-school stigma, but he's a former Auburn Tiger with the speed and athleticism to have played at an SEC level. What went wrong? He didn't go to class enough, but he has resurrected his career and has all the talent and the upside to find an NFL home. While he's not all that big, he tore off a 4.49 at the Combine and moved like a corner. Not just a finesse defender, he can hit a little bit, too, and is a willing tackler. Faster than quick, he'll have trouble with the shiftier receivers and plays small. A good football player who can run, he should be a whale of a special teamer early on and should find a home in nickel and dime packages.
CFN Projection: Fourth Round

Fifth Round

CB Asa Jackson, Cal Poly 5-10, 191
Overall Pick No. 169 CFN Overall Ranking: Unranked
A nice all-around defender, he has decent size and enough speed to get by. He's not a blazer, but he can run and is a pure corner with strong coverage skills. Banged up a bit, he has some injury concerns and he's not going to beat anyone up, but he has value in dime packages and as a third corner option.
CFN Projection: Free Agent

Sixth Round

WR Tommy Streeter, Miami (Jr.) 6-5, 219
Overall Pick No. 198 CFN Overall Ranking: 140
Very tall and really, really fast, he brings sub-4.4 wheels in the body of a thin tight end. With the frame to add at least 15 more pounds, he could get bigger and still find a nice niche as a devastating deep threat. No, he'll never block anyone and yes, he'll be a one-trick pony, but that one trick could be devastating. He'll be eliminated by anyone who applies a jam on the line, and he'll never be a full route tree target, but get him on the field, air it out, and let him go run under it. Along the way, though, expect a lot of drops and plenty of mistakes.
CFN Projection: Third Round

Seventh Round

DT DeAngelo Tyson, Georgia
Overall Pick No. 236   CFN Overall Rank: Unranked
CFN Projection: Free Agent