In his 15 months as general manager, DeCosta has been aggressive with eight player trades (fifth-most in the league over that span) and the signing of 10 players to contract extensions.
When it comes to the draft, it’s more about hedging bets for DeCosta. In the last two drafts, Baltimore has traded back in the first round three times (dropping back a total of 12 spots) to gain an additional third-round pick, two fourth-rounders and a sixth-rounder.
But the Ravens are coming off a 14-2 season and have only two more seasons with Jackson under a cap-friendly rookie deal. This seems like the time for Baltimore to take a gamble and do what it takes to get a playmaker like Chaisson, Murray or Jefferson.
2020 NFL Draft: The top Day 2 and Day 3 budget prospects - Michael Renner
NEED: RUN-AND-HIT LINEBACKER
Early: LB Kenneth Murray, Oklahoma
Later: LB Jordyn Brooks, Texas Tech
Everyone wants make-up speed at linebacker nowadays. With spread offenses and run games stretching the position from sideline to sideline more than ever before, speed is at a premium for modern linebackers.
Murray quite obviously has that after going 4.52 at the combine while weighing 241 pounds. It’s a big reason why he’s a possible first-round pick. Value-wise, though, we’d rather have Brooks somewhere on Day 2. Brooks went 4.54 at 240 pounds himself and earned the highest run-defense grade of any Power-5 linebacker in the draft class last year.
NEED: TOOLSY EDGE PROJECT
Early: Edge Yetur Gross-Matos, Penn State
Later: Edge Trevis Gipson, Tulsa
The average arm length for PFF’s top-10-graded edge rushers last season was over 34 inches. Having longer arms isn’t the end all be all, but it certainly makes life easier when trying to control offensive tackles one-on-one. Gross-Matos has that with 34 ⅞-inch arms, and he could find his way into the back end of the first round because of it. We’ll take Gipson and his 33 ⅞-inch arms somewhere early Day 3, though, and we won’t look back. He earned an 89.7 pass-rushing grade on 311 pass-rushing snaps this past season.
Zack Baun, LB Wisconsin: Baun was a force in his final year in Madison. The question really is where he’ll fit in the NFL, as a prospect who may be good in a lot of areas, but not great in one.
A.J. Epenesa, DE, Iowa: Here’s another great college player who may wind up being ordinary in the pros.
Terrell Lewis, DE/OLB, Alabama: This is purely medical.
Denzel Mims, WR, Baylor: Mims blazed a 4.3 at the combine, and was productive and clutch as a Bear. But there’s a reason why scouts saw him as a third- or fourth-rounder coming into the process, and a lot of it centers on how raw he is as a player.
DAY 3 HIDDEN GEMS
Albert Okwuegbunam, TE
The 6-5, 258-pounder (89 size score) ran a 4.49 40, fastest among 2020 tight ends and fifth-fastest at the position since 2003. Okwuegbunam was also the only tight end in the FBS with six-plus receiving touchdowns in each of the last three seasons.
K’Von Wallace, S
Over his four-year career at Clemson, Wallace played in 59 games (tied for most in school history) and started 36. The former high school track star offers high-upside athleticism as an early Day 3 pick.
Khalil Davis, DT
With his rare athletic profile, Davis is the kind of late-round pick you take a chance on.
His team-high eight sacks last season offers a glimpse of Davis’ upside, but his lack of consistent statistical output gives him a production score of 66.
Seven-Round Ravens Mock Draft - Ryan Mink & Garrett Downing
Round 1, No. 28 – EDGE A.J. Epenesa, Iowa
Round 2, No. 55 – WR KJ Hamler, Penn State
Round 2, No. 60 – G/T Robert Hunt, Louisiana-Lafayette
The Ravens want a road grader in the trenches and the athletic 6-foot-5, 323-pound Hunt would do the trick. He was a right tackle the past two seasons (left tackle and left guard before that), but projects well at right guard as a replacement to Marshal Yanda. The Ravens like moving college tackles inside (see Kelechi Osemele in 2012, who was also a second-round pick).
Round 3, No. 92 – LB Willie Gay Jr., Mississippi State
If Kenneth Murray and Patrick Queen are both gone before the Ravens have a chance to get them at No. 28, they can still get a fast, physical linebacker in the middle rounds. Gay blew up the Combine with a 40-yard dash at 4.46 seconds. He looked ready to break out after a strong sophomore season with five sacks and two interceptions, but was held out of eight games last year due to NCAA violations.
Round 3, No. 106 – RB Zack Moss, Utah
Round 4, No. 129 – WR Tyler Johnson, Minnesota
Round 4, No. 143 – TE Thaddeus Moss, LSU
The son of Hall of Fame wide receiver Randy Moss is known more for his blocking than receiving, and he would be a mauler in the trenches.
Round 5, No. 170 – EDGE Anfernee Jennings, Alabama
Round 7, No. 225 – CB Parnell Motley, Oklahoma
First Round, No. 28: LB Patrick Queen, LSU
Second Round, No. 55: WR Jalen Reagor, TCU
Speed. Speed. Speed. The Ravens gave their offense a home-run threat last year with the addition of wide receiver Hollywood Brown, and now Reagor adds more big-play ability to the unit.
Second Round, No. 60: OL Robert Hunt, Louisiana
Third Round, No. 92: OLB Jabari Zuniga, Florida
The Ravens have a strong track record of finding quality mid-round pass rushers, and Zuniga fits the bill.
Third Round, No. 106: DT Leki Fotu, Utah
Fourth Round, No. 129: WR Lynn Bowden, Kentucky
Fourth Round, No. 143: S J.R. Reed, Georgia
He started 42 games over the last three years and came up with five interceptions.
Fifth Round: No. 170: TE Devin Asiasi, UCLA
Seventh Round, No. 225: LB Chris Orr, Wisconsin