The Ravens Make Some Noise In Round One of the NFL Draft
The Baltimore Ravens entered the 2022 NFL draft looking to make a splash pick with their 14th overall selection. With the first five picks of the first round being all defensive players, it looked like the Ravens would trade back. But after a string of offensive players including four wide receivers taken off the board, some strong defensive players were left for the Ravens to pick from.
The Ravens would go on to use their 14th pick to select safety Kyle Hamilton out of the University of Notre Dame. Hamilton was projected as a top five pick in early mock drafts but after a slow 40 time at the combine his draft stock fell. But luckily for the Ravens he fell to 14 allowing the Ravens to draft what many consider to be the best safety in this years draft.
Standing at 6’4, 220 Ibs Hamilton is a big safety who is aggressive in pass coverage and is an effective tackler who plays well downhill. In three seasons at Notre Dame Hamilton totaled 138 tackles, 16 pass deflections, and eight interceptions.
Hamilton joins Chuck Clark and recently acquired safety Marcus Williams in a Ravens secondary that finished last in pass defense in 2021.
The Ravens were not done picking in the first round however after selecting Hamilton. In a surprise move the Ravens traded Marquise “Hollywood” Brown to the Arizona Cardinals as well as their 100th overall selection for the Cardinals first round pick, the 23rd-overall pick.
Brown who was the Ravens leading wide receiver in 2021, catching 91 passes for 1,008 yards and six touchdowns, appeared to become frustrated with the organization at seasons end deleting all mentions of the Ravens from his social media. The Ravens in turn elected to trade Brown sending him to the Cardinals. Brown will team up with former Oklahoma Sooners and current Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray.
The Ravens now holding onto the 23rd selection didn’t stay there long as they quickly traded the pick to the Buffalo Bills in exchange for the Bills 25th overall pick as well as the Bills 130th selection. The Ravens now have six picks in the fourth round.
With the 25th pick the Ravens selected Tyler Linderbaum a center out of the University of Iowa. The Ravens drafting Linderbaum was not much of a surprise as Linderbaum has been linked to the Ravens in various mock drafts with the Ravens 14th pick.
Linderbaum is a strong run and pass blocker who has good footwork and body control over bigger defensive lineman. While Linderbaum isn’t the biggest center at 6’2, 296 Ibs, that hasn’t stopped him from becoming one of the best centers in the country while at Iowa.
Linderbaum will look to fill the void left by Bradley Bozeman as the Ravens offensive line looks to keep quarterback Lamar Jackson up right and healthy in 2022.
The Ravens have two picks tomorrow night, the first coming in round two with pick 45, and the second pick coming in round three pick 76. The Ravens still need to address the hole at defensive end as well as look to draft an NFL ready offensive tackle.