While we've covered how dumb the NFL's draft grades are, we can't help but take a peak at them and see what the analysts think about how Ozzie Newsome and company drafted. It should come as no surprise that the grades are ultimately all positive as Baltimore entered the draft with 10 picks and were able to fill multiple needs with value players.
For a quick reminder on who the Ravens drafted, here are all the picks (click on the players' names to see the original selection article and a quick analysis about that player)...
Round 1 (#26): Breshad Perriman - WR
Round 2 (#55): Maxx Williams - TE
Round 3 (#90): Carl Davis - DT
Round 4 (#122): Za'Darius Smith - DE/OLB
Round 4 (#125): Javorius Allen - RB
Round 4 (#136): Tray Walker - CB
Round 5 (#171): Nick Boyle - TE
Round 5 (#176): Robert Myers - OG
Round 6 (#204): Darren Waller - WR
As you'll see the Ravens came into the draft needing help with offensive weapons (RB, WR, TE) and help on the defensive side of the ball (pass rusher, DT and CB). All of those holes were filled and the Ravens expect immediate contributions from their first three draft picks. Most bad to mediocre teams are lucky to have immediate contributors on their team from the first round or two, yet the Ravens, one of the better teams in the NFL, should see some help pretty quickly from the 2015 NFL Draft class.
Because of that, the analysts gave the Ravens passing grades.
Mel Kiper, ESPN: A-
Bryan Fischer, NFL: A
Jamie Dukes, NFL: B
Rob Rang, CBS Sports: A
Evan Silva, Yahoo: A
Chris Burke and Doug Farrar, SI: B
Not a bad set of grades. Certainly better than I did back in school.... The Ravens get pretty solid grades from everyone, with only Sports Illustrated and one NFL analyst giving the Ravens a B grade as their lowest selections.
The things that gave the Ravens the biggest boost were the first three selections.
Breshad Perriman was high on many analysts boards (Mel Kiper of ESPN fame had him at number 14 overall) and the Ravens snagged him at the end of the first round. An immediate need with the departure of wide receiver Torrey Smith and Jacoby Jones.
Maxx Williams was a player that many had mocked to the Ravens in the first round, but were able to hold off until the middle of the second round, jumping the Steelers to get him. A move that not only filled an immediate need on the team, but also screwed over Pittsburgh in the process.
Third was the selection of defensive tackle Carl Davis. A player that we had seen mocked to the Ravens in the first round as well, but that the Ravens ultimately got at their 90th overall selection in the 3rd round. One of the greatest values in the entire draft, Pete Prisco said "Getting defensive tackle Carl Davis in the third round is vintage Ravens," While Bryan Fischer had this to say about the Ravens' selection "Davis is an example of the rich getting richer."
The Ravens even got praise on the rest of their selections, with the analysts saying that those selections could eventually be starters or could even sneak playing time away from the current projected starters. Again, not too shabby when you consider the Ravens were just a few snaps away from playing in the AFC Championship game and possibly even the Super Bowl.
The only real knock that any of the analysts could give on the Ravens 2015 NFL Draft selections was that they waited too long to get a corner, one of the biggest issues heading into the Ravens' draft. Another issue that I didn't really see the analysts bring up, but still sticks regardless; is the idea that the Ravens didn't need to select so many players. Most likely, some of the players that the Ravens drafted won't be able to make the team. With so many selections, I'm surprised that Ozzie Newsome didn't package some of them together in order to move around the draft more and grab some of the higher rated players. However, if that is the biggest issue a team faces after the draft, that team is probably going to be a contender by the end of the season.
So this boils down to another typical Ravens draft. Grabbing falling gems and filling needs simply by being true to their boards.