Once again the Ravens stole a mid round draft pick by trading out of the first round and probably ending up with the same player they would have selected at 29th overall. They traded back six spots and picked up another pick inside the top 100, just where the Ravens like to do their damage.
Sure the Ravens could have selected a handful of different talented players at 29 and no one would have known any better, but looking at who is left on the board they will still end up with one of their top ranked players with the third pick of the second round.
There are two teams picking ahead of Baltimore in round two, St. Louis and Indianapolis. Even if both teams take players that the Ravens covet, here are still several more that could have been taken at 29 or higher. Two of the most surprising players to make it to day two are OLB/DE Courtney Upshaw and T/G Cordy Glenn. If you had told me this morning that we had selected either of these players at 29 I would have been ecstatic.
Upshaw is a pure pass rusher in the mold of Dwight Freeney. In the weeks leading up to the draft he was rated higher that his Alabama counterpart Dont'a Hightower who was selected in the first by the New England Patriots. (that pick still stings a bit). My only guess as to why he has slid out of the first round is because he is a bit undersized at 6'1". Something that should not really matter at all.
Glenn was rated as the highest guard in the draft for some time as well. It was surprising to me to see Wisconsin guard Kevin Zeitler picked so early and ahead of Glenn. Glenn has the versatility to play guard in the NFL or possibly move to tackle in the future.
There were a lot of surprise picks in the first round this year and it just goes to show that mock drafts are usually worthless and no one can predict how smart/stupid some teams front offices are. I guess someone had to make some boneheaded picks since Oakland was left without a first round pick this year.
Beyond Glenn and Upshaw there are still many players with first round talent available. I can't pretend to know who the Ravens have ranked the highest left on their big board but one thing is for sure, tonight will be much more fun than last night was for Ravens fans. Let's hope for a play-making wide receiver, fast, hard hitting linebacker and versatile offensive lineman on day two. I know the hours will be dragging on for all of Baltimore and the rest of Ravens nation today as we wait for 7pm to roll around. The great thing is, once day two starts we won't have to wait long for some much needed action!