Baltimore Ravens' 2019 draft: Analysis for every pick

NFL draft profile: Marquise Brown (1:04)

Marquise Brown, one of the fastest wide receiver prospects in the 2019 NFL draft, explodes off the line. (1:04)

Breaking down the Baltimore Ravens' 2019 draft class.

Round 1, No. 25 overall: Marquise Brown, WR, Oklahoma

My take: This was a bold first pick by new Ravens general manager Eric DeCosta. Spurning the franchise’s awful track record in drafting wide receivers, DeCosta selected the most explosive playmaker in this year’s class and gave a much-needed weapon on the outside for quarterback Lamar Jackson. Brown has terrifying speed and can score a touchdown every time he touches the ball. He has the ability to take the top off defenses and turn short passes into long gains. Nicknamed “Hollywood” because of the town he grew up in Florida, Brown instantly upgrades one of the most suspect wide receiver groups in the NFL. After parting ways with Michael Crabtree and John Brown in free agency, the Ravens are left with three receivers who have caught an NFL pass (Willie Snead, Seth Roberts and Chris Moore). How effective Brown is depends on the development of Jackson, the 30th-rated passer last season (84.5) among quarterbacks with at least 100 attempts. At the very least, Brown will force defenses not to stack the box against the run-heavy Baltimore offense. Brown averaged 17.5 yards per reception and led the Power 5 conferences with eight touchdowns of 25 yards or longer.

Concerns over size: The most popular knock on Brown is his thin frame. He’s 5-foot-10 and doesn’t see himself getting any bigger than 175 pounds. That could be a problem on contested catches against sizable cornerbacks. It also goes against the thought that the Ravens would bring in bigger receivers who have a large catch radius for Jackson. Durability is a concern. Brown isn’t expected to be cleared from a Lisfranc surgery until training camp in July. He suffered the foot injury on Dec. 1 in the Big 12 championship game before he played through it in the Orange Bowl.

Stat to note: Brown’s 2,413 receiving yards over the past two seasons led the Big 12.

Famous cousin: The AFC North lost Antonio Brown this offseason but gained his cousin in Marquise. Both are similarly built and both carry the same swagger. One notable difference is Antonio lasted until the sixth round of the 2010 draft and Marquise was the first wide receiver selected. Marquise speaks frequently with Antonio. "[He] just leads by example when we work out together, watch film. He shows me how to treat my body every day -- everyday things,” Marquise said. "His aggressiveness. Any time he gets the ball he wants to score as well. In that sense, we've got the same type of thinking and mentality -- we want the ball, get the ball and score."

Round 3, No. 85 overall: Jaylon Ferguson, DE-OLB, Louisiana Tech

My take: The Ravens must feel like they got one of the bigger steals in the third round in Ferguson, who ranked as the 39th-best prospect on Mel Kiper’s Big Board. After losing Terrell Suggs, Baltimore gets the player who broke Suggs' Division I record with 45 career sacks. Nicknamed “Sack Daddy,” Ferguson led the FBS with 17.5 sacks last season and recorded pressure on 19.1 percent of his pass rushes, which ranked second behind Josh Allen.


NFL draft profile: Jaylon Ferguson

Jaylon Ferguson is a defensive end out of Louisiana Tech who holds the FBS record with 45 career sacks.

Ferguson was disinvited to the combine after a background check turned up battery conviction from his freshman year in college. The Ravens did their homework on Ferguson, meeting with him three times during the pre-draft process. The Ravens were fortunate to get Ferguson after five pass-rushers were selected in the third round. During the draft, Ferguson helped people in Ruston, Louisiana, after a tornado hit there.


NFL draft profile: Miles Boykin

Notre Dame wide receiver Miles Boykin is a big receiver who turned heads with an impressive workout at the combine.

Round 3, No. 93 overall: Miles Boykin , WR, Notre Dame

My take: The Ravens remain aggressive in giving Lamar Jackson more targets on the outside, trading up nine spots to draft Boykin. This marks the first time in franchise history that the Ravens have taken two wide receivers in the first three rounds in the same draft (Baltimore selected Marquise Brown in the first round). Unlike Brown, Boykin provides more size at 6 feet 3, 220 pounds. He led Notre Dame in receptions (59), receiving yards (872) and touchdown catches (eight). Boykin has a nose for the end zone. His streak of six consecutive games with a touchdown is the longest by a Notre Dame wide receiver since Will Fuller in 2014. This upgrades what had been one of the most suspect wide receiver groups in the NFL.


NFL draft profile: Justice Hill

Justice Hill is an undersized running back from Oklahoma State with outstanding explosiveness and blazing top-end speed.

Round 4, No. 113 overall: Justice Hill, RB, Oklahoma State

My take: The Ravens continue their trend of building a speedy supporting cast around quarterback Lamar Jackson, selecting the fastest running back at the NFL combine. Justice Hill, who ran the 40 in 4.40 seconds, is the type of home run back that coach John Harbaugh wanted heading into the draft. His explosiveness complements the power running styles of Mark Ingram and Gus Edwards. He produced 13 games with 100-plus rushing yards over the last two seasons, tied with Iowa State's David Montgomery for most in the Big 12. Hill joins wide receivers Marquise Brown and Miles Boykin in a draft where Baltimore has focused on upgrading its offensive skill positions. This marks the first time that the Ravens have ever drafted a player from Oklahoma State.

Round 4, No. 123 overall: Ben Powers, OG, Oklahoma

My take: The Ravens watched a lot of their coveted interior linemen get drafted in the second and third rounds, so they waited until the fourth round to address one of the biggest needs on the team. Powers will have a chance to compete for the starting left guard job immediately. Baltimore is looking to upgrade that spot after the struggles and injuries to Alex Lewis, who was the 67th graded guard by Pro Football Focus. The Ravens love Oklahoma players, and Powers is fourth Sooner to get taken by Baltimore in the last two drafts. Powers is close friends with Orlando Brown Jr., the Ravens' starting right tackle last year. ESPN's Todd McShay projects Powers to be a starting NFL guard.

Round 4, No. 127 overall: Iman Marshall, CB, USC

My take: Marshall brings a lot of size and experience at cornerback, which was a sneaky need for Baltimore. Jimmy Smith is in the final year of his contract, and Brandon Carr turns 33 in May. The Ravens love Marshall's ability to play the ball (36 pass breakups) and physicality in tackling. Where Marshall has to improve upon is penalties. He was flagged 16 times the past two seasons. Marshall also has no interceptions the last two years. The addition of Marshall continues a trend for Baltimore. The Ravens have selected six cornerbacks in the last five drafts, and four have been taken in the fourth round.

Round 5, No. 160 overall: Daylon Mack, DT, Texas A&M

My take: The Ravens bolster their depth on the defensive front with Mack, a massive space-eater who was largely an underachiever in college. The No. 6 recruit entering Texas A&M, Mack struggled with stamina before an impressive season last year. He recorded 5.5 sacks and 9.5 tackles for loss. The Ravens needed to add some talent to the middle of the defensive line because Michael Pierce is entering the final year of his contract and Willie Henry is coming off a season in which he was limited to three games because of abdomen and back injuries.

Round 6, No. 197 overall: Trace McSorley, QB, Penn State

My take: The Ravens drafted their No. 3 quarterback and perhaps the next Taysom Hill, using their final pick of the draft on McSorley. While Baltimore sees McSorley as a quarterback first, Penn State’s all-time leading passer might have to play different roles such as Hill did last season for the New Orleans Saints. McSorley, who was the fastest quarterback at the NFL combine, might have to excel in a do-it-all role to make the Ravens’ 53-man roster behind quarterbacks Lamar Jackson and Robert Griffin III. Baltimore has only carried three quarterbacks in the regular season once in the past nine seasons. McSorley finished as the career record-holder at Penn State for wins (31), completions (720), passing yards (9,899), touchdown passes (77) as well as rushing yards (1,697) and rushing touchdowns (30) by a quarterback. But there has been skepticism whether he can play quarterback in the NFL because of his lack of size (6 feet) and inconsistency throwing the ball (59.2 percent for his college career).