By Cody Strahm @CodyJStrahm on May 22, 2014
Now that there has been ample time to digest the work GM Ozzie Newsome and company put in during the 2014 NFL Draft for the Baltimore Ravens, it’s time to prematurely predict the impact each new addition will have. Here's my take on which picks will boom, which will bust and which will fall somewhere in between.
C.J. Mosley may always pale in comparison to Ray Lewis, who became a champion and a legend in the middle of the Ravens' defense, but Mosley legitimately could become one of the league's best inside linebackers. Run, cover, blitz, tackle -- Mosley is proficient in every way. The only concern is whether or now he can stay healthy.
Ruling: Very good starter
Second-round selection Timmy Jernigan is a bit undersized for the nose tackle position, but he possesses more than enough strength to occupy blockers inside. Unlike many larger "one technique" linemen, Jergian has more potential to be a disruptive force in addition to clogging the middle. He can be a complete nose tackle for the Ravens.
Ruling: Above-average starter
The Ravens haven't had a rangy ballhawk in center field since Ed Reed's prime. Florida Sate product Terrence Brooks could re-supply them with one. Of course, Brooks doesn't have the ceiling of a truly elite player like Reed, but he has enough ability to land a starting role in Baltimore's secondary.
Ruling: Above-average starter
Colorado State tight end Crockett Gilmore may have been a reach in the third round, but GM Ozzie Newsome, a former NFL tight end, knows how to evaluate the position. Still, he projects as a limited receiving option who must get stronger to live up to his potential as an inline blocker.
Ruling: Mediocre backup
Brent Urban is a player who would have probably been drafted on Day 2 if it wasn't for a broken foot he suffered at the Senior Bowl. As a prototypical five-technique defensive end, Urban should fit nicely in Baltimore's 3-4 front. He's capable of emerging as a starter in time.
Ruling: Eventual starter
Ray Rice dodged a bullet by avoiding chargers for allegedly beating his girlfriend, but could still face a suspension. If he does, fourth-round pick Lorenzo Taliaferro could have an opportunity to earn a significant role as a rookie. He isn't exceptionally skilled in any way, but has enough size and athleticism to produce behind a good offensive line.
Ruling: Solid backup
An intelligent, technically sound interior lineman, John Urschel of Penn State should offer the Ravens immediate depth at guard and potentially center. He’s limited as an athlete and is slightly undersized, but displays enough quickness to become a functional pro.
Ruling: Quality backup
There’s a reason Ball State’s Keith Wenning was available so late in the draft. He’s a sup-par athlete who lacks great arm strength. But that doesn’t mean Wenning doesn’t have potential. Intelligence, composure and accuracy highlight his skill set, which should be suffice for a backup role for many years.
Ruling: Quality backup
Michael Campanaro isn’t necessarily destined for the practice squad like many seventh-round picks. The Ravens need receiver depth and another slot option badly enough to think he has a legitimate shot to make the team. He’s a good athlete who should compete for an early role this summer.
Ruling: Average backup
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