With the NFL Draft a little under a month away, the Mock Draft world is heating up. It’s an imperfect science, but in the end, it’s fun to speculate who your team might land on draft day.
After looking through a lot of the Mock Drafts, a majority of experts have the Ravens taking a TE in the first round.
If that’s the case, here are the Ravens’ options:
So far Gresham seems to be the favorite among the Mock Draft experts, and probably for good reason. The 6’6” senior had 66 receptions, 950 yards and 14 touchdowns in 2008 and would fit in nice for the much improved Ravens’ offense.
So far ESPN’s Todd McShay and Mel Kiper have the Ravens going with Gresham at 25, along with SI’s Don Banks and AOL Fanhouse’s Chris Burke.
My biggest concern with Gresham is his health, but other than that, I would be perfectly happy if he fell to the Ravens on draft day. I love his physical nature of play and he definitely “plays like a Raven.” He’s not known for his blocking, but has enough athleticism to get the job done.
With this addition the Ravens could possibly be one of the most physical offenses in the NFL. Gresham would be a good compliment to Anquan Boldin and a big target for Joe Flacco in the red zone.
Wes Bunting, of the National Football Post also thinks the Ravens will go TE in the first round, but thinks that they’ll pick Aaron Hernandez of Florida instead. I was a little curious about this decision, especially in the first round, so I went to the tape.
Another video I like of Hernandez is a little old, but really breaks down his ability. You can check that out here.
The thing I really like about Hernandez is that he stayed healthy throughout his college career, whereas Gresham spent most of last year on the bench with injuries. But, Hernandez isn’t known for his blocking and this should raise a huge red flag for the Ravens. They need a TE who can block, simple as that.
He hasn’t been found in any of the first-round Mock Drafts, but I thought he was worth mentioning. It was a pretty risky move when he declared for the NFL Draft because he’s been troubled with back injuries, but doctors have given him the okay and most experts have him going in the second round.
I couldn’t find any highlight videos of him to pass along, but there are a few profiles of him on YouTube if you’re curious.
I thought he was worth throwing into the discussion, but not worth drafting for the Ravens. While experts praise his blocking and think he has a huge upside, the general consensus is that he might not be mentally ready for the NFL. His two years of college experience just might not be enough for him to grasp the NFL. Also, he sat out all of 2009 with injuries, another concern among experts.
Expect to see him go in the second round.
Here’s the question: If the Ravens were to grab a TE in the first round, who would you like them to take? Would you like to see Gresham, Hernandez or even Gronkowski?
Coming Friday: Mock Draft Talk - Cornerbacks.