College football has now come to a close, and the draft evaluation process will get into high gear. With the Senior Bowl rapidly approaching, draft boards are about to see some big changes. Though before the Senior Bowl arrives, here is my first seven round mock draft for the Ravens of the offseason, it’s loaded with talent on offense. I used Walk the Mock’s draft simulator to complete the mock draft.
First Round: Calvin Ridley, WR, Alabama
This is the best case scenario for the Ravens in the first round. The Ravens need a wide receiver, and Ridley is the best one available in the draft. In this simulation, he fell to 16, and was an easy selection. Ridley is a fantastic route runner, with break away speed. His hands are reliable as well. Ridley underwhelmed against Georgia, but he is still the best receiver available, and the Ravens would be happy to select him here.
Last year, three wide receivers went in the top 10. This year, there are not as many wide receiver needy teams ahead of the Ravens, and the top of the wide receiver class isn’t as good. Thus, it seems more likely for Ridley to fall to the 16th pick than Corey Davis or Mike Williams last year.
Second Round: Mark Andrew, TE, Oklahoma
The Ravens add another dynamic pass catcher with Mark Andrews. Andrews is a big play threat from the tight end position, and is a playmaker both before and after the catch. Andrews skill set reminds me of Travis Kelce. The Ravens don’t have a playmaker at tight end, none of the options the Ravens have at tight end have panned out. Andrews could solve the dilemma the Ravens have at tight end. It’s maybe a bit of a stretch for Andrews to still be on the board here. It depends on whether teams have Andrews rated higher than Mike Gesicki of Penn State, and how much other teams determine they need a tight end.
Third Round: Sony Michel, RB, Georgia
Three rounds, and three offensive weapons. No player helped his draft stock in bowl season more than Sony Michel. Michel was nearly unstoppable in both the Rose Bowl and the National Championship game. Alex Collins brings some strength and tackle shedding ability to the Ravens backfield, and Michel could add a speed element. Michel would be an upgrade over a player like Javorius Allen, and gives Baltimore another playmaker to give the ball to.
Fourth Round: Trenton Thompson, DT, Georgia
The Ravens pass rush faltered down the final stretch of the season, especially from the interior. When Brandon Williams was out of the lineup, the Ravens didn’t have enough depth inside, and were gashed by opposing running games week after week. Trenton Thompson gives the Ravens interior pass rush, and more depth on the interior. Thompson probably won’t start, but he can come in on plays where the Ravens want to blitz. His sack numbers were not great in 2017, he didn’t actually have any, but he was all over the backfield during Georiga games, and stuck out on film creating pressure.
Fifth Round: Marcell Ateman, WR, Oklahoma State
The Ravens got a potential game changing receiver in round one, but Baltimore still doesn’t have much size at the receiver position. Marcell Ateman would change that. Ateman, standing at 6’4”, had a breakout season in 2017, with over 1,100 yards. Ateman was excellent at making contested catches. His highlight film shows many jump balls in the endzone where Ateman is able to out-leap, and out-muscle the defender on him. I see some Mike Evans when watching Ateman’s film. I think he is a candidate to move up draft boards with a good performance at the Combine.
Sixth Round: Oren Burks, LB, Vanderbilt
Burks is an athletic inside linebacker that has the skill set to solve the problems the Ravens have at that position. The incapability of the current Ravens inside linebackers in coverage was exposed at the end of the season, especially against the Steelers and Bengals. Burks brings both coverage ability and reliable tackling. Burks was overshadowed by Zach Cunningham until this year, when he had a breakout. Burks had 80 total tackles in 11 games. Burks also had 21 passes defended and five interceptions over the course of his career.
Seventh Round: Chad Thomas, EDGE, Miami
The final pick in this seven round mock is a pass rusher from Miami, Chad Thomas. Thomas’ film shows an incredible inconsistent player, but he did show flashes of being a productive player. In the seventh round, the Ravens could be willing to take a chance on Thomas, and help him develop into a more complete player.