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Ravens News 2/28: ranking OT prospects, Combine freaks, RB picture and more

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NCAA Football: Fiesta Bowl-Ohio State vs Clemson Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Ranking the OT prospects for the 2018 NFL Draft - Michael Renner


Jones wins the award for prettiest pass sets in the entire class. That’s even more encouraging considering how little Ohio State’s offense asked him to take true pass sets. He’s already NFL ready in that regard and has improved every season of his college career.


Crosby is arguably the most physical tackle in the entire class. He’s also another player who has done it on both the left and right side in the college ranks. Crosby’s not going to win any awards for his athleticism, and could ultimately end up at guard, but he’s an easy projection as a run-blocker.

PFF agrees with most other analysts that Mike McGlinchey, Connor Williams and Orlando Brown are the three best offensive tackles in the class. Yet the next tier of blockers could provide maximum value to the Ravens if available at the appropriate spots on Day 2. Jamarco Jones deserves more attention that he has been receiving, he combines good size at 6’5 310 with an All-Big Ten pedigree and impressive pass blocking, as Renner notes.

College Football Freaks Set to Turn Heads at the 2018 NFL Combine - Bruce Feldman

7. TE Mike Gesicki, Penn State: A former high school basketball and volleyball star, the 6’6”, 252-pound Gesicki was a matchup nightmare for defenses and will be one of the most explosive athletes in Indy. At Penn State, he vertical jumped 37.5 inches and has broad jumped a ridiculous 10’11”, one inch more than Barkley’s best last year.

The NFL is a matchup league and Gesicki will be a physical mismatch for many defenses at the next level. While not much of a run blocker, he profiles as a move tight end in the mold of Zach Ertz. Gesicki should be an impact rookie in the right system and would be a fine pick for the Ravens on Day 2.

Team-by-team RB picture: Browns need a jolt; Bills need a plan - Matt Harmon


Baltimore Ravens: The Ravens have receiving backs Danny Woodhead and Javorius Allen under contract for 2018 and are all but assured of retaining the services of Alex Collins as an exclusive rights free agent. Collins was a breakout player for the Ravens after being promoted from their practice squad early in the 2017 season. He nearly hit 1,000 yards and ranked as the 11th-most elusive back (minimum 175 carries), per Next Gen Stats. Collins earned another shot to prove he can sustain his excellent 2017 play, and the Ravens have more than one option to cycle into the pass-catching mix.

Woodhead may not return to the Ravens after producing just 256 total yards in eight games last year. However, due to a backloaded contract structure, releasing the 33 year old back would free up less than a million of salary cap space, per Spotrac. Kenneth Dixon posted 544 yards in a dozen games as a rookie and should be back from a knee injury, potentially forming a dynamic one-two punch with Alex Collins. Still, the Ravens should consider drafting a running back as early as the fourth round, depending on which players remain available.

Former Ravens OLB Pernell McPhee released by the Chicago Bears - Dustin Cox

Former Ravens outside linebacker Pernell McPhee was released by the Chicago Bears on Monday, February 26.

Drafted 165th overall in the fifth-round of the 2011 NFL draft by the Baltimore Ravens, McPhee would play his first four seasons with the Ravens before signing a new contract with the Chicago Bears.

McPhee has been a premier pass rusher throughout his career when healthy, but missed 25-percent of all games after signing with the Bears due to a knee issue that first surfaced while he was in Baltimore, as well as a shoulder injury. The Ravens could use more pass rush on the interior of their defensive line, but as Dustin points out, they are better off saving their cap space for other positions considering their excellent young depth at edge rusher.