Ozzie Newsome had a lot of holes to fill in the 2017 NFL Draft, and for the most part, he filled those holes. The Baltimore Ravens headed into this year’s draft with their main needs at outside linebacker and wide receiver. Steve Smith Sr. retired after last season and the team also lost Kamar Aiken to free agency. Elvis Dumervil also didn’t return to the team and Terrell Suggs is nearing the end of his career.
The Ravens also had needs on the offensive line and in the defensive secondary. Former Dallas Cowboys cornerback Brandon Carr was signed as a free agent and the team also decided to bring Lardarius Webb back, so the needs in the defensive secondary seemed to be partially taken care of.
Along with offensive linemen, the Ravens also needed a running back heading into the draft after failing to find their answer last season between Terrance West, Kenneth Dixon and Justin Forsett. The Ravens signed former San Diego Chargers running back Danny Woodhead, but he’s likely not expected to be the number one option.
Baltimore Ravens 2017 NFL Draft Review
Here’s who the Ravens decided to draft:
1st round, 16th overall: CB Marlon Humphrey (Alabama)
2nd round, 47th overall: OLB Tyus Bowser (Houston)
3rd round, 74th overall: DE Chris Wormley (Michigan)
3rd round, 78th overall: OLB Tim Williams (Alabama)
4th round, 122nd overall: G Nico Siragusa (San Diego State)
5th round, 159th overall: G/T Jermaine Eluemunor (Texas A&M)
6th round, 186th overall: CB Chuck Clark (Virginia Tech)
Ravens 2017 Draft Grade: 7.5/10
The Best Player: Marlon Humphrey, CB
Marlon Humphrey is an elite corner back who should be starting week one. The Ravens struggled with their pass defense last season and adding Humphrey along with Carr should help the secondary improve drastically. Acquiring another starting corner back also allows Tavon Young to play his natural position, which is the slot corner. A lot of mock drafts had the Ravens taking a wide receiver in the first round; either Mike Williams from Clemson or Corey Davis from Western Michigan, but both players were already taken. Humphrey was arguably the best player available when the Ravens drafted him and they also filled a need with the pick, making it a very smart decision.
The Head-Scratcher: Chuck Clark, CB
Clark was the Ravens final pick of the draft in the sixth round. While Clark is a decent player and could make a roster in the NFL, it likely won’t be on the Baltimore Ravens. As previously mentioned, the Ravens already addressed their defensive secondary by signing Carr and Webb along with drafting Humphrey. Drafting Clark didn’t really make much sense, especially when numerous talented wide receivers were still on the board.
The Surprise: Tim Williams, OLB
The Ravens addressed their need at outside linebacker with their second pick in the draft, taking Tyus Bowser, however they decided to take another outside linebacker just two picks later. Tim Williams was projected by some to be picked in the first or second round, so it was equally as surprising that Williams was still available. The Ravens added two solid edge rushers in the draft to help them replace Dumervil and Suggs in the future.
The Steal: Chris Wormley, DE
Chris Wormley is another player that the Ravens probably weren’t expecting to be there in the third round. Just a few picks before they took Williams, the Ravens took Chris Wormley, who played under John Harbaugh’s brother, Jim Harbaugh at Michigan. Wormley is an athletic defensive lineman who can clog running holes as well as provide pressure on the opposing quarterback. The Ravens re-signed star defensive tackle Brandon Williams to a five-year contract this offseason and Wormley will be a nice addition to their first line of defense. Wormley has the potential and ability to start for the Ravens as a rookie and Ozzie Newsome must be thrilled to have been able to get him still in the third round.
Most Likely to Turn Heads in Training Camp: Tyus Bowser, OLB
The Ravens wasted little time addressing their need at outside linebacker. Although there were some talented edge rushers available in the first round, the Ravens decided to wait until the second round and it paid off. Bowser fits in perfectly in Baltimore because of his aggressive and physical style of play. Fans will be impressed at training camp when they see how much speed and quickness Bowser has for how big he is. Bowser has the athletic ability to keep up with wide receivers and the strength to get by offensive tackles. Quarterbacks are sure to have a rude awakening when they first encounter him.
The Rest: Nico Siragusa, G and Jermaine Eluemunor, T
Siragusa and Eluemunor are both great value picks. Siragusa has the talent to start right away, but that doesn’t speak well of the Ravens offensive line. Eluemunor played guard in college, but has the size to move outside to tackle. He’ll likely be a rotational tackle and could even start as a rookie. The fact that two rookie offensive linemen could start and neither of them were taken in the first three rounds doesn’t bode well for Joe Flacco.