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Latest Mel Kiper Mock Draft sees Ravens go cornerback in Round 1

First national mock after the Ravens agreed to a deal with Odell Beckham Jr.

NCAA Football: Ohio State at Maryland Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

After the agreed deal between wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. and the Baltimore Ravens, it appears there may be a change in mock drafts concerning the club. The first big-name mock draft post-OBJ, a two-round mock draft by ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr., sees the Ravens go cornerback at No. 22.

Deonte Banks, CB, Maryland

“You could argue whether the Ravens actually filled their need at wide receiver with the signing of Odell Beckham Jr.. Why? Because it was just a one-year deal,” Kiper wrote. “They still have issues beyond 2023. Still, I could see them turning to cornerback instead. Banks has excellent physical tools. He ran a 4.35-second 40-yard dash at the combine and showed off a 42-inch vertical jump, which was the best among the cornerbacks in Indianapolis. He excels in man coverage, using his speed to turn and run with receivers. He only had two picks in his career, but he gets his hands on passes. He could start on the other side of Marlon Humphrey in Baltimore.”

The Ravens wide receiver issues for this season may be solved, but getting a jump on the future by adding another wide receiver makes simple sense. Beckham Jr. is only around for the 2023 season; the cycle of needing more talent at wide receiver will return. Therefore, selecting a wide receiver in Round 1 is equally a possibility.

Of course, the Ravens will go best player available when the time comes, but at pick No. 22, with a possibility of Banks, cornerback Emmanuel Forbes and wide receivers Quentin Johnston, Zay Flowers and Jordan Addison all being available, who is atop the Ravens big board?