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Ravens News 2/22: Right Player, Right Price and more

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COLLEGE FOOTBALL: JAN 11 CFP National Championship - Alabama v Ohio State Photo by David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Ravens need to stick to ‘right player, right price’ approach to free agency - Mike Preston

Personality also plays a part.

In the past two years, the Ravens were a relatively young team and possibly couldn’t absorb a high-maintenance player, but the nucleus of this team is older now. Harbaugh has shown he can work with temperamental players like Peters, but not totally destructive ones such as Thomas.

Former Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome used to say, “right player, right price” when talking about free agency, but that was mainly about fitting in under the salary cap. There are just so many other parts of the equation, which is why teams spend much time poring over video, talking to assistant coaches, checking medical reports and doing off-the-field background checks before making decisions on players.

They look at the previous offenses and defenses these guys played in which also plays a factor. Team chemistry is an often-used phrase in professional sports, but it all has to come together for a team to be successful.

A lot of things have to mix and match. You just can’t plug in names and everything works.

Ravens Priority Will Be Upgrading the Offensive Line - Todd Karpovich

Baltimore currently has $22,97 million invested in the offensive line, which ranks 29th in the NFL, according to Spotrac. The Eagles were ranked first at $56.59 million, followed by the Raiders ($53.27 million), Cowboys (%2.29 million), Giants ($51.99) and the Browns ($51.07 million). Cleveland was the only one of those teams to make the playoffs, while the others had questions at quarterback.

Quarterback Lamar Jackson absorbed 29 sacks in the regular season and was taken down eight more times in two playoff games.

There are numerous free-agent offensive linemen available in the free-agent market, most notably, guard Brandon Scherff (Washington), tackle Trent Williams (San Francisco), guard Joe Thuney (New England), and center Corey Linsley (Green Bay).

2021 NFL Draft interior offensive lineman rankings - Michael Renner

4. CREED HUMPHREY, OKLAHOMA

Humphrey has been one of the most consistent centers in the country for the past three years. He’s allowed only 28 pressures over that span on nearly 1,300 pass-blocking snaps. He boasts a versatile body type for the interior at 6-foot-5, 320 pounds and isn’t likely limited to only center at the next level.

When Humphrey gets his hand placement down, he’s not letting go. He flashes some of the best hand usage in the draft class, and it’s why he’s excelled in pass protection over his career.

His issues come with consistently playing with leverage. He’s had massive issues with squatty nose tackles and can get walked back into the pocket. Because of that, Humphrey’s best position may even be guard at the next level.

5. JALEN MAYFIELD, MICHIGAN

Mayfield’s allure is all about what he could become. His high-end plays are as impressive as any other offensive linemen in the draft class. The 6-foot-5, 320-pound junior possesses some serious explosiveness all throughout his frame. He can not only run with guys with a strong lower half, but he can also toss them out of the hole with his upper body.

Not often do you see someone this physically gifted, and it’s why he’ll be coveted highly in the 2021 NFL Draft. We’ve yet to see all that translate to consistent pass protection just yet, though. At right tackle in 2019, he allowed an unsightly 27 pressures on 458 pass-blocking snaps. He really didn’t face anyone of note in his two games this past season to quell that issue, either.

3-round 2021 NFL Mock Draft - Ian Cummings

27. Baltimore Ravens: Amon-Ra St. Brown, WR, USC

Surprised? Don’t be. Amon-Ra St. Brown has fallen under the radar in a strong receiving class, but he’s most definitely worthy of first-round consideration in the 2021 NFL Draft. The Ravens need reliable, well-rounded receiving talent, and at the 27th pick in this 3-round 2021 NFL Mock Draft, St. Brown might be the best fit remaining.

Terrace Marshall Jr. offers a better athletic profile and more size, but St. Brown is an authoritative target who has the speed and agility to get yards after the catch while also possessing the body control and vertical ability to make plays downfield. He would immediately give Baltimore’s receiving corps a steady constant, and he’d look good making plays in purple and gold.

At the moment, he profiles as more of a Day 2 pick. Nevertheless, if he tests well at his pro day, there isn’t much on tape stopping him from ascending up the board.

58. Baltimore Ravens: Baron Browning, LB, Ohio State

104. Baltimore Ravens: Cam Sample, DE, Tulane

Cam Sample has inside/outside versatility at around 6-foot-3, 274 pounds, and he has immense pass-rushing upside. He plays with a red-hot motor, and as the Senior Bowl showed, he can generate pressure with violent hands, burst off the line, and power in his strikes.

NFL Mock Draft 2.0: The Niners Take Their QB of the Future - Danny Kelly

27. CHRISTIAN BARMORE

INTERIOR DEFENSIVE LINEMAN ALABAMA

YEAR RS SOPHOMORE

AGE 21

HEIGHT 6’5”

WEIGHT 310

SHADES OF: QUINNEN WILLIAMS

The Ravens have a bevy of players all set to enter free agency in Yannick Ngakoue, Derek Wolfe, Jihad Ward, Justin Ellis, Pernell McPhee, Matt Judon, and Tyus Bowser, meaning this group may be undergoing a bit of a makeover in the offseason. Barmore would be a nice start to that rebuild, and he’ll add some youth to an aging defensive line group for the Ravens.

MASSIVE, DYNAMIC DEFENSIVE LINEMAN with strong hands and quick feet; he’s slippery and disruptive as a pass rusher but has just one season of starting experience

WHY HE COULD RISE

Barmore is big, long, and strong, bringing a quick first step and heavy hands from the interior.

WHY HE COULD FALL

He lacks experience and needs to be more consistent and disciplined against the run.