The 2017 NFL Draft was a crucial one, as always, for Ozzie Newsome and Co. in Baltimore. The Ravens have missed the playoffs in three of four seasons since winning Super Bowl 47. They needed a great draft to bring back their first AFC North championship since 2012.
Newsome and the rest of the Front Office feel the pressure to regain the success that Baltimore enjoyed from between 2008-2012. To do that, it was necessary to draft players that can contribute immediately.
Baltimore came out of the 2017 draft with seven draft picks, five of which being defenders.
- Round 1, Pick 16: CB Marlon Humphrey, Alabama
- Round 2, Pick 47: OLB Tyus Bowser, Houston
- Round 3, Pick 74: DE Chris Wormley, Michigan
- Round 3, Pick 78: OLB Tim Williams, Alabama
- Round 4, Pick 122: OL Nico Siragusa, San Diego State
- Round 5, Pick 159: OL Jermaine Eluemunor, Texas A&M
- Round 6, Pick 186: S Chuck Clark, Virginia Tech
My Favorite Pick
- My favorite pick for the Ravens is a toss-up between Tyus Bowser and Tim Williams. I think both will contribute and could be Baltimore’s starting outside linebackers when Suggs retires. Bowser was a great pick in Round 2, even over a receiver like Juju Smith-Schuster or a lineman, considering both Forrest Lamp and Cam Robinson were off the board. Williams could end up being the steal of the draft at 78 if he cleans up his off-field problems and plays up to his 1st-round potential. Baltimore should be very excited to see these two terrorize QBs together for the next 4+ years. Learning under Suggs is a plus, too.
My Least Favorite Pick
- I really liked all of Baltimore’s picks in rounds 1-5. My least favorite selection was Baltimore’s last one, safety Chuck Clark. I didn’t see the need to grab a safety in this draft (other than if Malik Hooker would’ve fallen to them in Round 1). Baltimore already had four safeties on its roster in Eric Weddle, Tony Jefferson, Lardarius Webb, and Anthony Levine Sr. Where does Clark fit?
- I give this draft a B+ grade. They failed to address a need at offensive play-maker, which was a surprise, but understandable given the way the board fell. Other than O.J. Howard being on the board at 16, Baltimore was only given real options on defense. Which, considering what kind of team Baltimore is, was not a bad thing. This defense could be dominant as soon as this September. Baltimore lead the league in interceptions last season. Adding two explosive edge rushers and a defensive end who will join the rotation right away? The team wasn’t given many chances to upgrade the offense, so they ran with it and upgraded an already tough defense.
By season’s end, this draft could end up producing 4-5 starters/contributors, which is exactly what Baltimore needed coming into this draft. Add that to last year’s talented group, and this team just got younger and more talented. Ozzie needed a great draft following multiple misses from 2013-2015. The only problem is he only had seven picks to do that, which is low for his standards. I believe this draft will be a major factor in pushing Baltimore back into the playoffs. If they add a veteran receiver and lineman in the final phase of free agency/via trade, this team can go back to being feared.