The Baltimore Beatdown staff’s instant reactions:
The first round was a bit of a rollercoaster, CeeDee Lamb slid into trade-up range and then fan favorite Cesar Ruiz was picked before Baltimore’s turn on the clock. At 28, Eric DeCosta snapped the LSU-less streak with an ascending off-ball linebacker that many considered to be the best player available.
The selection of Patrick Queen makes sense for a variety of reasons. First and foremost, inside linebacker was the most pressing positional need if the Ravens had to line up for a regular season game tomorrow. And the depth at the position was thinning out after Kenneth Murray and Jordyn Brooks were selected.
Queen is the modern day three-down linebacker, with run stopping instincts, zone dropping coverage ability and most importantly, sideline-to-sideline range that should immediately improve a run defense that was gashed by outside runs last season. While Queen may not be the ideal choice in terms of positional value, his presence should certainly bolster the roster and enable DeCosta to reap value with his four Day 2 picks without being forced to reach for an inside linebacker.
The Ravens let the board come to them in the first round and were rewarded with a talented linebacker ready to patrol the middle of the defense in Week 1.
Personally, I did not think Patrick Queen to Baltimore was actually going to happen - largely because it was almost the consensus prediction among several analysts and experts. Heck, ESPN’s Mel Kiper mocked Queen to the Ravens in every single one of his mock drafts.
While not too thrilled with the idea of taking an inside linebacker in the first round, Queen was certainly the most optimal pick at No. 28 - especially with the way the board fell. I preferred Queen to that of Kenneth Murray and the former ended up being taken after both Murray and Texas Tech’s Jordyn Brooks. Thus, Eric DeCosta’s patience paid off and he was able to land Queen at great value. I would have loved the other LSU prospect available, Grant Delpit, based on personal preference but Queen is more than suitable.
The selection of Queen crosses off one of, if not THE most glaring positional need on the roster and the Ravens can now turn their attention to landing an interior offensive lineman, wide receiver and pass-rusher in the coming days. Queen has room to grow but brings a lot of valuable skills to the table and is only 20 years old. Definitely a lot to like.
Kyle P. Barber
In the end, the Ravens land the best middle linebacker in the draft by simply staying at No. 28 and watching three other linebackers go before him. After both Josh Bynes and Patrick Onwuasor departed in free agency, the greatest weakness on defense quickly became the middle linebacker position. Eric DeCosta has demonstrated he wants to fix the defense all throughout the 2020 offseason as he signed multiple defenders and caps it with a first-round pick. Now, the 2020 CFP National Championship Game Defensive MVP will square off against his former college teammate, Joe Burrow, twice a year.
Patrick Queen gives Baltimore the new-age inside linebacker that they have lacked on defense. Queen brings down-to-down consistency in the middle of the defense with the ability to play both the run and the pass. Queen’s sideline-to-sideline speed will flash behind the beefy defensive line of the Ravens. Queen won’t have too much on his plate as a rookie since safety Chuck Clark will wear the green dot. At only 20-years old and with just a year of starting under his belt, Queen’s potential is sky-high.
Patrick Queen immediately fills the need at inside linebacker, and he has a high ceiling due to his athleticism and instincts. Even though inside linebacker was a crucial need, the front office could have still found a great prospect on Day 2, but with Brandon Aiyuk, Justin Jefferson, and Cesar Ruiz off the board, Queen makes sense. Now, they should focus on landing a wide receiver and guard tomorrow.
Patrick Queen will be the beneficiary of a sured up Ravens defensive line that has upgraded with the additions of Calais Campbell and Derek Wolfe. While Campbell, Wolfe, Williams, and company eat up opposing lineman, Queen will be left free to roam sideline to sideline to target ball carriers. This pick fills the obvious need the Ravens have at linebacker and reinforces that Baltimore is not only looking to build an undefendable offense but also an elite defense.
The Ravens stick with their best-player-available strategy and find a solution to an immediate need at the inside linebacker position. Queen will flourish behind what should be a dominant Ravens defensive line. His advanced coverage abilities will allow the Ravens to better defend the intermediate passing offense, which gashed the defense at times during last season. Queen will be an immediate starter and should become an impact player for many years to come.
Queen is ILB1. He has the best intangibles which directly translate into reading the first two steps of offensive lineman better than any inside linebacker in the past two draft classes. He has flashed the ability to shut down HB option routes, Texas routes, wheel routes and cerebral genius in hook zone coverage.
Queen is the smartest football player the Ravens could’ve taken at 28, and many would’ve traded up to add the youngster. 25 years ago Ray Lewis was the fourth linebacker off the board at 26 overall. Queen is the fourth linebacker off the board at 28 overall. “Undersized” but overcompensates with extreme physicality. Slam dunk pick.