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Ravens News 2/9: Combine snubs, value free agents and more

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NFL: New England Patriots at Jacksonville Jaguars Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Bold 2019 NFL offseason predictions for all 32 teams - Jamison Hensley

Baltimore Ravens

The Ravens sign Mark Ingram in free agency.

Baltimore has done its best with patchwork at running back over the past four seasons -- from Justin Forsett to Terrance West to Alex Collins to Gus Edwards-- but the team needs a proven featured back in building an offense around Lamar Jackson. Under offensive coordinator Greg Roman, veteran runners such as Frank Gore and LeSean McCoy have thrived. Ingram is the type of durable, physical and efficient back (4.5-yard career average) who would be the perfect fit in Baltimore’s offense.

In 2018, Ingram posted 4.7 yards per carry in an offensive system that drew attention away from him. Ravens undrafted rookie Gus Edwards averaged 5.2 yards per carry and can be retained inexpensively as an exclusive rights free agent. Edwards is also six years younger than Ingram.

2019 NFL Draft: Biggest combine snubs - Chris Trapasso

Terronne Prescod, OG, NC State

Here’s a prospect I clearly like much, much more than the NFL. Prescod is currently my OG1, just outside of Round 1. But the 6-foot-4, 335-pound redshirt senior with a super-strong anchor and impressive lateral agility for his size won’t be in Indianapolis later this month and into the first week of March. He’ll have to exhibit his athleticism at the NC State pro day.

338 prospects have been invited to participate in the 2019 NFL combine.

2019 NFL free agency: Here’s an early look at six who’ll provide the most bang for the buck - Jason La Canfora

Za’Darius Smith

BAL • OLB • 90

This outside linebacker can do a little bit of everything and was a valuable part of the league’s best defense. Frankly, if I was Baltimore, I would be more willing to buy in on him rather than perhaps spend egregiously to keep more-heralded middle linebacker C.J. Mosley. Smith came on with 8.5 sacks last year and, with older edge players like Brandon Graham set to possibly get $14M a year in free agency, perhaps Smith will be a relative bargain after just one season in a starting role. Still untapped potential here.

Cordarrelle Patterson

NE • WR • 84

New England has some big-money decisions to make – with the tag and otherwise – on left tackle Trent Brown and pass rusher Trey Flowers. So they may be vulnerable here, and while they love Patterson, other teams should too. Might be the best return man on the planet and Bill Belichick and Josh McDaniels found out how to unlock him on offense, toggling between receiver and running back. So much speed. An RPO-heavy team like the Ravens should be all over adding him to the backfield/out in space to compliment Lamar Jackson.

Patterson is an intriguing free agent possibility. His versatility as an offensive chess piece and explosive return specialist would fit well in Baltimore.