For the past week, SB Nation's blog dedicated to examining all prospects for NFL, Mocking The Draft decided to gather representatives from all 32 NFL blogs (I represented the Ravens) and do a live mock draft where an open thread was used to make picks. There were time limits for each pick, pick announcements and even trades involved when choosing players. You can check out the entire draft here if you would like to see which players were chosen for which teams and the many trades involved throughout all 7 rounds. Thanks to JP23 for setting up the draft and TheAngelsColts for keeping the draft organized. Here are the selections I made for the Ravens.
1) Jermaine Gresham, TE Oklahoma. (6'6", 256 lbs)
- With the 25th pick in the draft, the Ravens take Gresham. Gresham is a huge body and incredible athlete. A tragic knee injury early in the year forced Gresham to be sidelined the entire season, but many people still know what he is capable of as a pass catching Tight End. Strong football player and faster than many people give him credit for. A pre-season All American and will be a great option for a Ravens offense that lacks players who can make plays in the middle of the field. A replacement for Todd Heap. See hightlights here.
2) Marshawn Gilyard, WR Cincinatti. (6'0, 180 lbs)
- In the 2nd round, the Ravens select Gilyard here to possibly be that big play threat that this offense has not seen in the past. An explosive WR who many experts think is the most dangerous WR after the catch in this years draft. Many questioned some parts of his game coming into the Senior Bowl, but after a strong performance in the game with over 100 yards receiving and a 24 yard TD, many are taking back some of their remarks. Gilyard was said to be the heart of his Bearcats team by many players and did just that by catching 81 passes for 1,276 yards and 11 TD's. Gilyard is a good person, someone who overcame some struggles early in his college career and was able to come back strong for Cincinatti. See highlights here.
Check out rounds 3-7 after the Jump.
3) Syd'Quan Thompson, CB California (5'9", 182 lbs)
- Getting Thompson in the 3rd round will be an absolute steal come the end of April. One of the best athletes at the CB position and is a fearless player. Even though he is on the smaller side, Thompson is great at tackling the legs of bigger opponents and just as dominant in coverage at times. Throws his body at WR when trying to make a play and has the speed to stick with anyone. Would be a great nickel/dime CB for the Ravens. See highlights here.
4) Riley Cooper, WR Florida (6'4", 214 lbs)
- Cooper is a freak athlete playing WR. Drafted by the Texas Rangers in baseball, it shows just what kind of determination and abilities Cooper has as an athlete. Another big body WR who would be a nightmare for other teams 3rd or 4th CB when Cooper lines up in the slot. Faster than people think and is considered by some to have the most pure route running in this draft. Catches nearly everything thrown his way. We all know that Cooper is used to the big stage coming from Florida where he had great success with average QB play from Tebow. See highlights here.
5) Ted Larsen, C North Carolina State (6'2", 302 lbs)
- A very nimble Center who has great footwork and consistency with snapping the ball. Did well in the shotgun formation and has great recognition on the pass rush. Larsen was originally at DT coming into NC State and was asked to make the switch to Center in 2007. Good lateral movement to mirror the defensive tackle. Knows what the defender is attempting to do due to his experience at the position. The Ravens have minimal depth at the Center position and Larsen is a potential replacement for Birk.
6) Jammie Kirlew, DE Indiana (6'3", 259lbs)
- One of the 6 finalists for Defensive End of the Year award and voted first team all Big-10 by the media. Finished the 2008 season with 10.5 sacks and 19.5 tackles for loss, both ranked fourth on Indiana's single-season list, second in the Big Ten and tied for 14th nationally in sacks and third in the league and sixth nationally in tackles for loss. Has a great character and incredible work ethic. Kirlew could help on the edge rush. See highlights here.
7) Brian Jackson, CB Oklahoma (6'0", 203 lbs)
- Jackson sat out most of his freshman and sophomore years, but finally got his chance to start as a junior, making 72 tackles, four for loss, two interceptions, 10 pass breakups and two forced fumbles. In his second year as a starter this fall, his four interceptions and eight pass break-ups led the team. Great press-corner, physical and is very effective jamming the WR right off the snap. Lacks back pedaling speed, but makes up for it with his big body. Could be a good special teams player and possible Dime player.
Undrafted Free Agent Pickups.
- Boris Lee, MLB Troy (6'0", 245 lbs)
- Quentin Scott, FS Northern Iowa (6'4", 224 lbs)
- Roy Upchurch, RB Alabama (6'0", 210 lbs)
The Ravens should be able to pick up 2 or 3 extra picks with the Free Agent losses we had last off-season, so more needs would definitely be filled. My first 4 picks consisted of players all in my top 100, so I think I was able to choose some great talents while also addressing some of the holes for the Ravens.