Scouts Inc. on Ravens' wide receivers

April, 30, 2009
4/30/09
2:30
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's James Walker

One of the most asked questions in Baltimore is why the Ravens passed up receivers with every draft pick last weekend? Behind starters Mark Clayton and Derrick Mason, there is very little proven talent at that position.

Are the Ravens happy with their current talent? Does Baltimore have a fallback plan?

We check in with ESPN.com's Matt Williamson of Scouts Inc. to get the answers to these questions.

 
  Al Bello/Getty Images
  Mark Clayton has shown flashes, but has not yet proved he can be a reliable option at receiver.

James Walker: Matt, the Ravens have an obvious need for receiver depth. Why do you think they passed on the position entirely during the draft?

Matt Williamson: That is surprising, there's no question about that. I really commend them for going up and getting [former Mississippi offensive tackle] Michael Oher. I don't think he should have been there that late at No. 23. He's a potential star right tackle, and I think they will groom him to be a great player. But I still think they ignored their biggest need. Their receivers are just OK. Mason still plays at a pretty high level, and he's tough and plays through pain. Clayton has shown glimpses, but to say he's somebody they can count on to be a solid contributor might be a little far-fetched. But I think quarterback Joe Flacco in his second year does have the ability to make those around him better as he progresses.

James Walker: What about the depth behind Clayton and Mason? Any chance these players could stand out for Baltimore next season?

Matt Williamson: Demetrius Williams I think has a chance to be a decent player, at least a solid No. 3 that they didn't have last year. But who's to say one of those guys won't get hurt again? Now they're in the same situation. There still isn't much depth there. They drafted Marcus Smith last year, and I haven't seen anything out of him to think that he's going to be starting material or someone you want on the field. I think they like Smith a little bit, but to project him as anything more than a No. 4 receiver at this point is a little bit of a reach.

James Walker: Since we agree this is strange for Baltimore to ignore the position, any chance general manager Ozzie Newsome has a last-minute trick up his sleeve?

Matt Williamson: It couldn't be Braylon Edwards or Chad [Ocho Cinco] because they're both in the division. It would have to be Anquan Boldin if anything. I tend to think Ozzie does have something planned, because they are one of the top front offices in the league, and they have to realize that they're close. Ozzie is about as good as it gets, and it seems like there has to be another shoe to drop. There should be something else out there for them to address that need, because it seems like they're ignoring it.

James Walker | email

ESPN Miami Dolphins reporter

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