Thursday, July 5, 2012
Grading 2009 draft: Baltimore Ravens
By Jamison Hensley
All this week, the AFC North blog will take a look back at the 2009 draft for each team in the division. For Thursday, we'll review the draft for the Baltimore Ravens:
First round: Michael Oher, OT
Second round: Paul Kruger, OLB
Third round: Lardarius Webb, CB
Fifth round: Jason Phillips, LB, and Davon Drew, TE
Sixth round: Cedric Peerman, RB
Thumbs up: The Ravens came away with the best cornerback of the draft when they selected Webb with the 88th pick. He's proven better than the likes of Miami's Vontae Davis (first round) and Denver's Alphonso Smith (second round). The only other starter from this group is Oher, and he can be viewed as a disappointment. The Ravens traded a fifth-round pick to move three spots up to get Oher at No. 23, and teams do that with the expectation of getting a left tackle. But Oher hasn't been able to hold down a job on "The Blind Side," which is also the name of the movie based on his life.
Thumbs down: The big miss for the Ravens was Kruger, who was supposed to be a high-motor pass rusher. The team even gave him Michael McCrary's No. 99 jersey. All Kruger has produced in three seasons is 6.5 sacks and one start. This is a pivotal season for Kruger, who steps into Terrell Suggs' rush linebacker role. The only other player remaining with the Ravens is Drew, the third-string tight end.
Hensley's grade: C-plus. The Ravens got the AFC North's second-best player out of the 2009 draft in Webb (who still ranks behind the Steelers' Mike Wallace in this draft), but they fell short everywhere else. Oher isn't a franchise left tackle, and Kruger is far from a feared pass-rusher.