The NFL Combine is now over. The Baltimore Ravens have a lot of information to analyze from interviews and stats from the event. One glaring stat that always helps players improve their stock is speed. There are a few players who showed lighting quickness at the WR position, but the one I would like to focus on today is a guy from Oregon State. Brandin Cooks looks like he could be the next great Ravens player to play in the slot.
Sure, he is only 5-foot-10, 189 pounds, but the 2013 Biletnikoff Award winner, has the speed and agility of a young Derrick Mason. He had 1,730 receiving yards in 2013 and was only second to Davante Adams in the NCAA in receptions with 128.
Cooks has great speed as noted from his 40-time of 4.33. He flies by defenders on every route and can really take the top off of a defense. The 2013 consensus All-American has great agility and can turn on a dime. His field vision is impeccable, as he can locate the ball in the air and adjust his body. After the catch this Beaver is looking to get up field and quick. He is fearless across the middle, despite his size. Whatever team he falls to he will own the slot.
Maybe the Ravens have been looking at the position of slot WR all wrong. Ozzie Newsome has been bringing in talent above the 6-foot range in size, while he should have been going smaller. Let’s take a look at two chain movers from last year, Cole Beasley of the Dallas Cowboys and Julian Edelman of the New England Patriots. While neither player is big in size, they both contribute big to their teams on third down.
Wes Welker is the ideal player in the slot and Tom Brady as well as Peyton Manning could speak to that; both have benefited from his slot services. The Ravens have been having trouble finding that slot guy and Cooks could be the answer. Will they take a shot at him with the 17th overall pick or will they pass until the second or possibly third round?