With their first pick in the 2017 NFL Draft, the Baltimore Ravens selected cornerback Marlon Humphrey. While Humphrey is a good player, is he the one the Ravens needed?
With the 16th overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft, the Baltimore Ravens selected Marlon Humphrey, a cornerback out of Alabama.
Humphrey is a great player in my opinion, I think he’ll be an excellent corner in the NFL. He’s one of the most, if not the most, well-balanced corners available in this year’s NFL Draft.
He can cover speed receivers and prevent separation, and he can cover more route-oriented receivers. He’s got quick feet, he’s physical, like I said, he’s a great player. But is he the player the Ravens needed?
Now look, I’ll preface this by saying, I trust Ozzie Newsome, as all Ravens fans generally do. And as of this writing, only the first round of the NFL Draft has taken place, so there’s more for the Ravens to do.
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But I’m not 100% certain that Humphrey was the player the Ravens needed to draft at number 16 overall. He addresses a need, yes, the Ravens could use another cornerback. But with the signing of Brandon Carr in the offseason, cornerback wasn’t as big of a need as other positions.
Now, I’m convinced that, had they fallen to them and that weird run of wide receivers hadn’t happened early in the first round, the Ravens would have drafted Corey Davis, Mike Williams, or maybe even John Ross.
So I understand why wide receiver, a major need for the Ravens, wasn’t addressed in the first round. The next best available wide receiver was probably Zay Jones, and he’s not a first-round guy.
But why not address the outer linebacker position? That’s a huge need for the Ravens right now. With the surprise retirement of Zach Orr and the release of Elvis Dumervil, the Ravens are hurting for a pass rush. Plus, Terrell Suggs could retire any season (I’m kind of surprised he didn’t retire this season), then they’re really up a creek without a pass rush.
So why didn’t they draft, say, Takkarist McKinley, or Taco Charlton, or even maybe T.J. Watt? These are all guys that would’ve fit the Ravens defense well and would have addressed a very immediate need for the team.
Yet, they chose Humphrey. Now look, I’m not overly upset about the pick, like I said, I trust Ozzie, and I think Humphrey is a very talented corner, which will really help if/when Jimmy Smith gets hurt.
It just seems odd to me that the Ravens would address a secondary (pun only slightly intended) need rather than, what I see as, a primary need.
Now, here’s the argument against them drafting a linebacker: There’s a lot of talented linebackers in this year’s draft. I personally am a fan of Jordan Willis, and I think if he falls to the Ravens in the second round, they could go after him.
And maybe we’ll be looking back at the draft this year saying “Wow, the Ravens not only got an exceptionally talented cornerback, but a very good linebacker as well,” I don’t know. But I will say that, at first glance, the pick of Marlon Humphrey is somewhat puzzling.
I trust Ozzie, and overall I’ll be happy to see what’s starting to look like a fantastic secondary for the Ravens (perhaps the best they’ve had in a long time), I’m just hoping they’re able to address their other needs just as effectively.