“This is my third mock draft, and I’ve pegged Marshall to the Ravens in all three, which pretty much guarantees that they will go in another direction,” Kiper wrote.
Sarcastic skepticism aside, Kiper believes that Marshall to the Ravens not only fills a glaring need but that if he is still on the board when they are on the clock, picking him “makes too much sense” for General Manager Eric DeCosta.
“Lamar Jackson needs a wide receiver who can line up on the outside and run every route,” Kiper wrote. “That’s how Jackson can take the leap forward in Year 4. Marshall had 10 scores and averaged 15.2 yards per catch last season, and he had 13 touchdowns while catching passes from Joe Burrow in 2019.”
With Justin Jefferson tearing up the NFL as a rookie and Ja’Marr Chase not available after opting out, the onus of WR1 in the Tigers offense fell on Marshall Jr’s shoulders in 2020. Despite instability and inconsistent play from the quarterback position, he had a very productive junior season with 48 receptions and 731 receiving yards in just seven games.
He showed the positional versatility to play in the slot last season but does some of his best work outwide and would give the Ravens a much-needed upgrade at the X-receiver spot. As Kiper noted, he’s a proficient route runner that can also go up for and come down with contested catches, as well as generate a lot of yards after the catch.
If Marshall isn’t on the board when it’s the Ravens’ turn to pick or if they opt to go in a different direction, selecting Alabama’s Landon Dickerson to address the center position would be a solid second option. The grad transfer came over from Florida State last year and helped pave the way for the Crimson Tide on their latest title run.
Dickerson also won the Rimington Trophy Award, given to the top center in all of college football. He is currently recovering from a knee injury that he suffered in December but he is progressing well and is still projected to go as high as the late first-round despite a checkered injury history.