by DANTE EVANS
1st Round (26th Overall) Ravens: WR Breshard Perriman, UCF. The leading receiver for the UCF Knights is a key asset to a Baltimore Ravens team that lost their top wide receiver in Torrey Smith and top tight end Owen Daniels. Perriman lead the Knights with over 1,044 receiving yards last season. The 6’2 wideout will give the Ravens a bigger target than what they had with Smith and the 4.24 40-yard dash speed of Perriman will cause havoc down the field against corners, giving him the capability to be a deep-ball threat. Joe Flacco is going to need a reliable receiver to throw the ball to, and despite Perriman’s history of dropping catches, he will be one of the go-to targets for Flacco throughout the season.
1st Round (5th Overall) Redskins: OT Brandon Scherff, Iowa. The Redskins gave up the second most sacks in the National Football League last season. Scherff coming in at 6’4, 319 lbs is exactly the kind of size that the Skins needed to fill in their holes along the lines. The Redskins were their greatest when their offensive line consisted of the Hogs, a line filled with 300+ pound lineman, during the 1980s and 1990s. Schreff was supposedly the toughest and strongest lineman in the Draft. He will not be the savior to the team’s offensive line woes, but he is a great start to fixing the problem.
2nd Round (55th Overall) Ravens: TE Maxx Williams, Minnesota. The Ravens were in need of a tight end after letting go of 10-year vet Owen Daniels. Standing at 6’4, 249 lbs, Williams is a huge target for Flacco, and will be quite reliable with strong, big hands. Tight ends in Baltimore have been played key positions on offense in the past. The rolodex of names includes Todd Heap, Dennis Pitta and Shannon Sharpe. Williams will have some big shoes to fill.
2nd Round (38th Overall) Redskins: DE/LB Preston Smith, Mississippi State. The Redskins lost Pro Bowler Brian Orakpo to the Tennessee Titans and were in need of someone to complement Ryan Kerrigan on the other end. Smith can be that guy because he is an effective power rusher with great run defense capabilities. The Skins need a power rusher like to create more pressure for the star quarterbacks they’ll be facing throughout the year. His versatility also allows him to be more of an asset for the team.
3rd Round (90th Overall) Ravens: DT Carl Davis, Iowa. The Ravens were 8th overall in defense last season, much better than the two years prior. The addition of Davis will be a great one after the loss of Haloti Ngata on the defensive line. He will need some development due to his lack of stamina and push off the ball, but he has the potential in the future to be a decent player.
3rd Round (95th Overall) Redskins: RB Matt Jones, Florida. There is a battle for 2nd string running back in Washington and Jones was drafted to fight for either the second or third position on the team. Jones is a big, physical, downhill runner, something the Redskins franchise has excelled with in the past. Jones is also a great blocking running back and can pick up the blitz easily. Jones does have a problem with seeing holes and has a lack of patience when waiting for holes to open up.
4th Round (122nd Overall) Ravens: DE Za’Darius Smith, Kentucky. Another defensive pickup for the Ravens along the line. Smith can be a versatile, down and dirty lineman who will fight in the trenches. Smith can also shed blockers and get to the ball carrier. Smith is not a good pass rusher and that may be his biggest weakness coming into Baltimore.
4th Round (125th Overall) Ravens: RB Buck Allen, USC. The Ravens need someone to compliment Justin Forsett because he can’t do it by himself. Allen can be that explosive, downhill runner to back up Forsett. Allen can also be a receiver out of the backfield and can be used in the screen offense. Allen struggles with finishing runs and finding open holes. His indecisiveness will be his biggest problem going into the offseason, but something that can be adjusted.
4th Round (136th Overall) Ravens: CB Tray Walker, Texas Southern. The Ravens picked up somebody to enhance the lack of a defensive back core that they have now. The Ravens pass defense was ranked 23rd last season giving up about 249 passing yards per game. Walker can bring help to that secondary, with his 6’2 height and his lockdown mentality against receivers.
4th Round (105th Overall) Redskins: WR Jamison Crowder, Duke. A possible addition to an already stacked receiving core, Crowder is not the tallest target standing at 5’8, but his acceleration speed is by far his greatest strength. Crowder may be the best asset for the Skins as a returner, something the team has lacked in recent years.
4th Round (112th Overall) Redskins: LB Arie Kouandjio, Alabama. Another lineman that the Skins will try to mold into their starting lineup, Kouandjio is good with his hands and can fire into linebackers with intensity, but he also has poor athleticism and lacks ability to block beyond the line of scrimmage. It will take some time to develop for him to become a factor.
5th Round (171st Overall) Ravens: TE Nick Boyle, Delaware. Boyle is another possible tight end asset for the Ravens. He’s a huge target standing tall at 6’4 and has the size and athleticism to be an every down tight end. One major weakness is his ability to block, it’s simply not there. The Ravens may need to develop him before he can get on the field.
5th Round (176th Overall) Ravens: LB Robert Myers, Tennessee State. A possible future lineman for Baltimore, Myers has great footwork as a lineman and great body control. He lacks arm strength and tends to lose contact on outside runs. He may be good for the Ravens in the future, but needs some development.
5th Round (141st Overall) Redskins: LB Martrell Spaight, Arkansas. Spaight could be a future addition to the linebacker core for the Redskins. Washington ranked 12th against the run last season and could always use more depth at the linebacker position being that they play a 3-4 defense. Spaight attacks the gap and the line of scrimmage and is known for tackles in the backfield. Defending the pass is one of his weaknesses and something that he will need to become better at.
6th Round (204th Overall) Ravens: WR Darren Waller, Georgia Tech. Flacco and company will have some huge targets coming their way this offseason, and Waller is the tallest of the group. Standing tall at 6’6, Waller is a huge target for Flacco down the field. With the ability to box out defenders and go up for the jump ball, Waller also has the speed to beat defensive backs down the field. Keeping speed while trying to locate the ball is his biggest weakness and he will need to develop better run blocking skills.
6th Round (181st Overall) Redskins: CB Kyshoen Jarrett, Virginia Tech. The Redskins need help in the secondary and Jarrett can be another young asset for the team. Washington gave up about 249 passing yards per game last season and the secondary is the part of the defense where the Redskins have been the most inconsistent. Jarrett is the physical defensive back they are looking for but recovery speed and broken plays trouble him.
6th Round (182nd Overall) Redskins: LB Tevin Mitchel, Arkansas. Teammate of fellow draft pick, Martrell Spaight, Mithcel is another possible linebacker for the Redskins. If Mithcel can stay healthy, he can develop and help out with the poor secondary of the Skins.
6th Round (187th Overall) Redskins: WR Evan Spencer, Ohio State. Spencer is another tall receiver in this year’s draft, standing at 6’2, he has great hand-eye coordination. Spencer is also willing to go block and will do the dirty work wherever needed. He needs to work on his after the catch abilities and his breakout speed.
7th Round (222nd Overall) Redskins: C Austin Reiter, South Florida. Standing at 6’3, 296 lbs, Reiter can be used on the line for his size. For being a center, he is very athletic, but needs a good amount of development before he will see playing time.
Overall draft grade for the Ravens: A- The Ravens made great picks with Williams and Perriman, giving Flacco big targets to throw to and develop into another great receiving core. I would have liked to see the team pick up another player in the secondary, due to the problems they had in that department last season.
Overall draft grade for the Redskins: B+ The Redskins made great moves in the draft, trying to fill the many holes that they have. Scherff was a key pick for them along the offensive line, trying to bring better protection to Robert Griffin III. The multiple defensive picks were also great additions but I am skeptical about Kouandjio. Overall though, this was a good draft for Scott McCloughan in his first year in Washington.