The bargaining and announcing at Radio City Music Hall are done for the week. For the NFL, decisions have been made and Roger Goodell has been booed. The Ravens had eight picks in this year's draft. Did they fill in their needs? Let's find out.
Jimmy Smith, CB, Colorado
From the beginning, draft analysts have pegged Jimmy Smith as the Ravens' first-round draft pick. Despite off-the-field character issues, Jimmy Smith has the height and the talent that the Ravens wanted. As for the character issues, Smith says he's put those behind him. If you think this is bogus, look at another chance the Ravens took with a Cornerback a couple years ago: Ladarius Webb.
Torrey Smith, WR, Maryland.
Let's face it. All of Joe Flacco's pass targets last year lacked one common thing: speed. Speed isn't something that can be taught. It comes from within. Enter Torrey Smith, a Wideout who can stretch defenses. He does have skills that need work (catching, sticking with routes), but he can learn to improve with the coaches' help.
Jah Reid, OT, Central Florida.
I regret to announce, Mr. Flacco, that if the Ravens sign Jah Reid, you will no longer be the tallest player on the team. The 6'6" Quarterback may find himself looking up at the 6'7" Right Tackle. Reid will also be the heaviest man on the O-Line at an intimidating 324 lbs. While it's true that there are skills he needs to improve (reading blitzes, body power), he can improve them.
Tandon Doss, WR, Indiana.
Whereas Torrey Smith is a speedster, Tandon Doss is a fox. Scouting reports dub Doss a "crafty route runner" who "understands coverages and is effective against zone." He can catch anything in his radius and he knows how to adjust in mid-route. He's not a speedster and he needs to get stronger, however. He also needs to improve his run strength. Besides the speed, these are things that he can learn and improve.
Compensatory picks: Chykie Brown, CB, Texas, and Pernell McPhee, DE, Mississippi State
Chykie (pronounced "SHOCK-ee) Brown has long arms, which is good for any Defensive Back. He's also able to keep up with Wideouts and he's quick to try to recover from on-the-field mistakes. However, his skills need a lot of work. The problem with that is he thinks he's better than he really is. Perhaps playing with the "big boys" will burst his bubble. Pernell McPhee could very well be Ray Lewis' replacement as leader on the Front Seven (after Ray retires). Scouting reports hold his character and dedication in high esteem. He needs work with shedding blockers refining his techniques, but he has the character to improve.
Tyrod Taylor, QB, Virginia Tech
In "Braveheart," William Wallace rallies an army of disheartened Scots and defeats a superior enemy. Tyrod Taylor is described as a "very competent, competitive, likeable, respected team leader who can rally a huddle." He can evade oncoming tacklers and he uses his strong arm to "zing it." The skills that need work are gauging his arm strength, throwing more accurate passes, anticipating the rush better, and keeping cool in the midst of heavy pressure. I think the Ravens found a good back-up for Joe.
Anthony Allen, RB, Georgia Tech
I honestly don't know why the Ravens drafted him, but I do know that Ozzie has his reasons.