Ravens didn’t draft a receiver, but not for lack of trying

NFL: DEC 26 Ravens at Bengals
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On the first night of the draft, the Ravens traded receiver Hollywood Brown to the Cardinals. The Ravens did not draft one during the entire proceedings.

Why not?

It wasn’t for a lack of effort,” Ravens G.M. Eric DeCosta told reporters after the draft concluded. “I think, honestly, the fact that there was a run of receivers in the first round like there was. . . . I wouldn’t say it was a great receiver class in general, compared to some of the years. There were very good players at the top. So, for us, it was a good draft, and there were really good players at other positions. There were some receivers that we liked; we tried to take a couple guys at different points. But, again, one of the phenomenon’s that we’ve seen is that those receivers get picked really, really early now. Similar to corner, they just fly off the board — in some cases, maybe a round to a round and a half earlier than you’d expect.

“I said this last year, but we like our receivers, we do. We’ve seen growth, we’ve seen our guys mature and develop. I can just say, I really think. . . . We took [Rashod Bateman] last year. He was our first-round guy, and I think he’s going to show you why. Devin [Duvernay], we have a theory that guys that end up playing on special teams and being really good special teams players end up being really good position players. We think Devin is a great young player. We took Tylan [Wallace] last year, and kind of the same thing. He’s a young player and we were very excited to get him last year. He’s a guy last year that we got in the fourth round, that we probably would have taken a round and a half earlier last year. Then we have James [Proche II], and James made a jump last year and made some critical plays in games.

“So, we like our group. We will add players to the mix. We’re doing that right now, and we’ll look at veteran players as well. It wasn’t really by design that we wanted to create a hole on the team. I don’t look at it that way, but in this business, you pivot, you dodge, you weave. You’re always really going to be chasing a need. Every team in the league would tell you that you’re chasing needs. That’s what you do in this business. You’re always trying to fix your biggest needs and move forward, and you want to get as strong as you can. We’ll continue to address it or look at it. There will be opportunities for us – teams will call us – maybe some possible trades moving forward. [There will be] undrafted free agency, free agents on the street, and we’ll build the best team we can.”

According to the team’s website, they’ve actually added five receivers via undrafted free agency: Alabama’s Slade Bolden, Makai Polk of Mississippi State, Trevon Clark of Cal, Emeka Emezie of N.C. State, and Oregon’s Devon Williams. So there’s quantity. Whether there’s quality remains to be seen.

11 responses to “Ravens didn’t draft a receiver, but not for lack of trying

  1. Bateman is a possession guy with some speed. Not bad but without anybody else to take the top off reliably it’s going to be the Lamar and Mark Andrews show again until one or both get hurt.

  2. Their WRs are terrible so it’s surprising.

    Then again, they have an RB as a QB so it doesn’t matter.

  3. Sounds like there were no back up plans in case your intended targets were taken before you.Really? This is not Fantasy Football were you just let the draft come to you!
    You prepare for these scenarios in case you have to move up or back in the draft to get your player you want. I dont think you just sit by and watch the future of your team get taken by other teams. The ravens
    Pretty much lost their whole running game before the season started last year and the One thing they should have locked in was a WR incase that happened again this year.
    It sounded to me the sentiment in the war room was “OH WELL” and shrugged it off

  4. They also run the ball so much and have one of the best recievers in the league but he plays TE it’s not as big a need as people make it out to be. They’ve won a lot of games the past few years with mark andrews being the only real receiving threat on the team.

  5. Considering their history drafting receivers they should take the George Costanza approach and draft the exact opposite of their instincts. It sure couldn’t hurt…

  6. Interesting that Hollywood Brown still wanted out even after catching 90+ receptions for 1000+ yards last season. I don’t see him exceeding those numbers in Arizona. Ravens are gearing up for a dominant rushing offense again, but look for them to sign Will Fuller, Jarvis Landry, or even Julio Jones for some steady veteran WR presence in the next few weeks.

  7. Doesn’t matter who they acquire. Their QB is bad at throwing a football.

  8. This is why BB takes players ranked several rounds later. You think you’re getting a player in round four or five? Not if he’s gone in the first or second.

    Keep playing checkers…

  9. If all the corners and all the receivers worth mentioning went off the board a round early, I think you valuation is what might have been off

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