2020 NFL Draft: Baltimore Ravens 7-Round Mock Draft

Last season, the Baltimore Ravens saw their defense struggle mightily in a playoff loss to the Titans to end their season prematurely. In this updated 7-round NFL mock draft, we will take a look at how the Ravens can bolster their defense for the 2020 season.

Heading into last year’s playoffs, there wasn’t a hotter team in the NFL than the Baltimore Ravens. They owned a 14-2 record, winning the AFC North Division and earning the top seed in the AFC. Ozzie Newsome’s final first-round pick as general manager was magnificent, selecting quarterback Lamar Jackson with the 32nd pick.

Jackson was the league’s Most Valuable Player in 2019 and has redefined the modern-day quarterback. The Ravens entered the playoffs as the favorite to win Super Bowl LIV, but that was quickly proven wrong, as Baltimore was completely embarrassed at home by the Ryan Tannehill led Tennessee Titans in the divisional playoff round.

The Ravens offense and Jackson, who played spectacular in the regular season, played poorly. However, it was the defense that really let them down. Titans running back Derrick Henry ran through the Baltimore defense like a knife cutting through hot butter. It was made crystal clear during free agency that the Baltimore front office was focused on enhancing their front-seven on the defensive side of the ball to prevent the embarrassment that occurred in the playoffs from happening again.

The Ravens made one of the first splashes of the 2020 NFL offseason when they traded a fifth-round selection in the draft for Jacksonville Jaguars defensive lineman Calais Campbell. Campbell has been one of the NFL’s best defenders for almost a decade. Of course, he is coming off of one of his worst seasons as a pro and will be 34-years old when the 2020 season starts. However, he is a major upgrade to the Baltimore defensive front.

Ravens’ general manager Eric DeCosta didn’t stop there, as they signed former Broncos defensive tackle Derek Wolfe. While Wolfe has battled injuries the last couple of seasons, he has the traits that personify “playing like a Raven”. The additions of Campbell and Wolfe should drastically improve Baltimore’s run defense.

Team Needs: OL, EDGE, LB, WR

The 2019 NFL Draft was the first for DeCosta as the general manager of the Ravens. Before taking over as GM, DeCosta spent years as the sidekick to the legendary Newsome, but 2019 was his turn to run the show. With his first pick, DeCosta selected the electrifying Marquise “Hollywood” Brown to be a weapon for their star quarterback. Although we didn’t see jaw-dropping production from Brown, we saw glimpses of a future superstar. While that was a major positive for the organization, DeCosta failed to build solid depth in the trenches, which is something that will need to be addressed in the 2020 draft.

The Ravens are tasked with replacing future Hall of Fame offensive guard Marshall Yanda, who announced his retirement at the start of the 2020 season. Despite his age and injury battles, Yanda was the Ravens’ best offensive linemen in 2019, and his retirement leaves a major hole to fill.

The Ravens slapped the franchise tag on Matt Judon, which temporarily gives them an upper-echelon pass-rusher, but does Baltimore count on him being their long term? If not, the cupboard is bare when it comes to pass-rusher for the Ravens. This is an area where they need more production in 2020.

Finally, it would be wise for the Ravens to continue to stockpile receiving weapons for the reigning league MVP. NFL defenses will do their best to adjust to Jackson’s game, and for him to sustain the success he had in 2019, he will need to continue his evolution as a passer.

Round 1, Pick 28: D’Andre Swift, RB, Georgia

If you’re a fan of the Ravens, you are probably scratching your head and asking yourself, “We just had the best rushing attack in 2019. Why in the world would you give the Ravens a running back in round one?” It’s not a bad question, but what if I told you that the lethal running game of the Ravens could be even better by adding a new dimension, such as Georgia’s stalwart D’Andre Swift?

Swift is an extremely different runner than Mark Ingram. Swift is explosive and a big-play threat, while Ingram is the type of player that can consistently eat 5 yards at a clip. In fact, this is a scenario with which Ingram is quite familiar. Ingram played in the backfield with Alvin Kamara when he was a member of the New Orleans Saints, and the best NFL comparison for Swift is Kamara. NFL defenses would be in big trouble if they were tasked to stop a Baltimore running game featuring Jackson, Ingram, and Swift.

Related | Tony Pauline’s Scouting Report: Georgia RB D’Andre Swift

One thing that has led to the Ravens being one of the most successful teams in the league when it comes to the draft over the last 20 years is their willingness to take the best player available over filling a position of need. There is no doubt that when the Ravens are on the clock with the 28th pick, the best player on the board will be star running back Swift.

Round 2, Pick 55: Lloyd Cushenberry, OL, LSU

As I mentioned above, priority number one for the Baltimore Ravens should be finding a replacement for Yanda. Enter Lloyd Cushenberry, who is one of the best interior linemen prospects in the 2020 draft. He is strong, plays with tremendous length, and excels in pass protection. He offers versatility, possessing the ability to line up at either guard spots or center. Also, Cushenberry is well-respected by his teammates, as he oozes leadership qualities.

The beauty of this pick is that Cushenberry is a true plug-and-play prospect. You can count on him winning a starting position on day one and being penciled in for the next decade. This big, battle-tested center instantly makes the Ravens’ offensive line better.

Related | Tony Pauline’s Top 300 Big Board

Round 2, Pick 60: Josh Uche, Edge, Michigan

Whether the Ravens sign Judon to a long term extension or not, pass-rusher is one of the organization’s biggest needs. In 2019, they spent a second-round selection on Louisiana Tech’s Jaylon Ferguson. Ferguson had a quiet rookie season, and while it would be foolish to discount him as a potential impact player, it would be equally foolish to depend on him as one of the players that will effectively chase the opposing quarterback.

Josh Uche is explosive off of the edge and should serve as a successful pass-rush specialist at the next level. He won’t give you much in run defense, as that is not his game. He wins by beating offensive tackles with his quick initial step and his speed on the edge. If there is one person that could give Ravens’ head coach John Harbaugh any inside information on Uche, it would be his brother and Michigan Wolverines’ head coach Jim Harbaugh.

Round 3, Pick 92: Gabriel Davis, WR, UCF

The Ravens added a speedy receiver last year when they selected Brown in the first round of the 2019 Draft. They also selected the big, physical Miles Boykin in the third round of the same draft. With that said, the Ravens still need more out of the wide receiver position to balance their offense.

Gabe Davis is one of the most underrated players in the entire 2020 draft. He is coming off a stellar 2019 season for the University of Central Florida, as he hauled in 72 receptions for 1,241 yards and 12 touchdowns. He is a big, physical receiver who comes with good fluidity and ball skills. Davis is the perfect complement to “Hollywood” Brown and should bolster the Ravens’ passing attack immediately.

Round 3, Pick 106: Jacob Phillips, LB, LSU

If you asked a majority of Ravens’ fans what the team’s biggest need in the 2020 Draft is, the answer you would hear most is linebacker. The teams’ starters, L.J. Fort and Josh Bynes, were horrendous in the Ravens’ devastating playoff loss to the Tennessee Titans.

Jacob Phillips possesses a great combination of size and physicality that will make him feel right at home in Baltimore. He does a tremendous job at filling gaps and shedding blockers. He is a sound tackler, playing with tremendous technique. He needs some work, but there is no doubt that in time, Phillips will find himself starting in the middle of the Baltimore defense.

Round 4, Pick 129: Jonah Jackson, OL, Ohio State

Remember when I said the Ravens have made taking a best-player-available approach their identity when it comes to the draft? Well, they take that approach here and land another high-quality interior offensive lineman that possesses immediate starter potential.

Jonah Jackson spent four seasons at Rutgers before transferring to Ohio State. Much like Cushenberry, Jackson has the versatility to play center or guard. He is reliable, durable, and gets to the second level with ease. With Ronnie Stanley and Orlando Brown, Jr. on the outside and an interior offensive line consisting of Matt Skura, Cushenberry, and Jackson, the Ravens might just have one of the best offensive lines in the league.

Round 4, Pick 134: Bryce Hall, CB, Virginia

The Ravens have one of the league’s best cornerback tandems in Marcus Peters and Marlon Humphrey. Also, they have their brilliant nickel-cornerback Tavon Young returning from injury and were able to sign Jimmy Smith to a one-year extension. Baltimore is loaded at the cornerback position, but that doesn’t stop them from taking the best player available.

There was a time when Virginia cornerback Bryce Hall was widely considered a first-round prospect. He suffered a significant ankle injury in 2019, ending his collegiate career, which has ultimately hurt his draft stock. The Ravens can redshirt him for a season and develop him. If handled correctly, we could look back in five years and conclude this pick as one of the biggest steals of the 2020 draft.

Round 5, Pick 170: Thaddeus Moss, TE, LSU

The tight end combination of Mark Andrews and Nick Boyle is a very good one. The third wheel, Hayden Hurst, was traded to the Atlanta Falcons for a second-round pick. So, it wouldn’t be a horrible idea for the Ravens to add to the unit.

Thaddeus Moss, the son of former NFL great Randy Moss, burst onto the scene during the College Football Playoff. He is a well-rounded player, possessing the ability to block and provide a significant red zone threat. This is a low risk, high reward selection that could pay huge dividends for Baltimore.

Round 7, Pick 225: Shaq Quarterman, LB, Miami

Linebackers from the University of Miami have done well for the Baltimore Ravens. While Shaq Quarterman is a far cry from Ray Lewis, there is a position for him in today’s NFL.

Quarterman is a tremendous leader and a good football player but lacks the speed and athleticism needed to be a three-down player at the next level. With that said, he has traits to be a productive run stopper and spot starter for the Ravens.

The Baltimore Ravens entered the postseason with a franchise-best 14-2 record, winning 12 consecutive games, and looking like an unbeatable juggernaut. In fact, Las Vegas had them as the odds on favorite to win Super Bowl 54 and hoist the Lombardi trophy. To the surprise of many, the Ryan Tannehill-led Tennessee Titans came into Baltimore for the divisional round and completely overwhelmed the Ravens, eliminating them from the playoffs. The city of Baltimore was shocked and devastated, as it was a blown opportunity for the talented Ravens team. The main objective of this Baltimore Ravens 7-round NFL mock draft will be to add physical players to their defensive front, which is the same unit that let them down in January.

All wasn’t lost in the 2019 season for the Baltimore Ravens, as Lamar Jackson won the league Most Valuable Player and showed signs of being one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL. Jackson entered the season with many question marks, but he undoubtedly answered those with his marvelous performance. With that said, there is no question he must play much better in the postseason. As it stands today, Jackson carries an 0-2 record in the playoffs, with both losses coming at home in M&T Bank Stadium.

The Ravens enter free agency with roughly $30 million in cap space but have a long list of free agents, which includes edge rusher Matt Judon, cornerback Jimmy Smith, defensive tackle Michael Pierce, and linebacker Patrick Onwuasor. This list of players is why I think Ravens’ General Manager Eric DeCosta will focus heavily on the defensive front in the 2020 NFL Draft, which I will emulate in this Baltimore Ravens 7-round NFL mock draft.

Before we make our picks, let’s take a look at the Ravens’ team needs, shall we?

Team needs

Inside Linebacker

The Ravens have a long history of spectacular linebacker play, led by the likes of Ray Lewis and C.J. Mosley. In 2019, they had nowhere near the caliber of play and opted to sign L.J. Fort and Josh Bynes a quarter of the way through the season. In the playoff loss to the Titans, Bynes was the worst player on the field, as he was consistently getting washed out and allowing Derrick Henry to run through huge holes. This position will be a priority for the Ravens in the 2020 NFL Draft.

EDGE

It is going to be hard for the Ravens to retain Matt Judon, as he is likely to cash in big during free agency. This comes one year after losing Za’Darius Smith to the Green Bay Packers the same way last year. Jaylon Ferguson, the 2019 2nd round pick, was given the chance to prove he was the next great edge rusher for the Ravens, yet he was very quiet. It’s not time to turn the page on Ferguson yet, as sometimes it takes some time for players to develop. With that said, the Ravens need to bolster their pass rush, whether Ferguson becomes a quality player or not. For the first time in a long time, the cupboard is bare when it comes to pass rushers and the Baltimore Ravens.

Interior Offensive Line

Rumors are swirling that All-Pro guard Marshall Yanda is heavily considering retirement, and center Matt Skura is a restricted free agent who is coming off of a major injury. With the running game being vital to the Ravens’ identity, finding premium blockers on the interior of the offensive line is paramount.

Wide Receiver

They spent a first-round selection in last year’s draft on wide receiver Marquise “Hollywood” Brown, and he enjoyed an above-average rookie season. Other than Brown, the unit is quite pedestrian. The 2020 NFL Draft offers one of the deepest wide receiver groups we have ever seen, so I’d bet my life savings that the Ravens walk away with another target for Jackson.

Baltimore Ravens 7-round NFL mock draft

Round 1, Pick 28: Patrick Queen, LB LSU 

If you watched the National Championship, you were probably asking yourself, “Who is that player wearing the #8 for the LSU Tigers?” His name is Patrick Queen, and his draft stock is skyrocketing.

In Baltimore, there is the phrase “Play Like a Raven“. There is a certain makeup for a player that the Baltimore Ravens will covet. They have to be tough, instinctive, passionate, and a true student of the game. Queen checks all of those boxes and fills the Ravens’ biggest need.

Queen has a high football IQ, allowing him to process things quickly. He has sideline-to-sideline speed, great fluidity, and plays a physical brand of football which the Baltimore brass will find very attractive. Adding even more value, Queen is skilled enough to cover tight ends and running backs.

In the clip below, Queen’s extraordinary ability to diagnose the play and pull the trigger are showcased:

Queen is the perfect fit for the Baltimore Ravens. He will immediately be given the chance to become a leader on the defensive side of the ball and will be coached by one of the best defensive minds in the league, Wink Martindale. If Queen finds his way to Baltimore, mark him down as a serious contender for Defensive Rookie of the Year.

Round 2, Pick 60: Neville Gallimore, DT Oklahoma 

The Baltimore Ravens have a long history of drafting players from the University of Oklahoma. Most recently, tight end Mark Andrews and right tackle Orlando Brown are Sooners that were selected by the Ravens. Both players made the Pro Bowl in 2019.

The Ravens made a hard run at defensive tackle Gerald McCoy last offseason, but he ultimately chose the Carolina Panthers. They are well aware that improving their defensive line is paramount, especially considering the teams’ best run stopper, Michael Pierce, is an unrestricted free agent.

Neville Gallimore has tremendous burst, allowing him to shoot the gap, causing consistent disruption and penetration. He plays with a great motor and possesses the ability to beat double teams. While it won’t always show up in the box score, Gallimore helps bolster the pass rush, as he uses various pass-rushing techniques to create constant pressure.

In the clip below, watch Gallimore embarrass the Texas center with a ridiculous spin move, showcasing his brilliant athleticism:

Another plug-and-play type of player who can pay huge dividends early for the Baltimore defense. Through two rounds, the Ravens have added some serious talent to their defense.

Round 3, Pick 92: Denzel Mims, WR Baylor 

While the Ravens spent high draft picks on the wide receiver position in the 2019 NFL Draft, there is still work to be done. Denzel Mims is a big-bodied receiver, standing 6’3″ tall and weighing in around 205 pounds. He plays with tremendous concentration, allowing him to thrive as a sure-handed pass-catcher. He excels when it comes to the contested catch and has an unreal catch radius. When the ball is in the air, it’s his.

He might not be the most polished route runner, but he is adequate. Mims isn’t a sudden runner and doesn’t possess the ability to start and stop effectively, but he does eat ground quickly with his long strides.

Ravens’ fans will remember how crucial Anquan Boldin was to their Super Bowl run in the 2012 season, and there are parts of Mims’ game, such as his toughness, that are reminiscent of Boldin. Providing more receiving targets for their league MVP QB can’t be a bad thing.

Round 4, Pick 124: Nick Harris, IOL Washington 

The Ravens have proven to possess the ability to find talented offensive linemen in the later rounds of the NFL Draft. While Nick Harris doesn’t have overwhelming size, he makes up for it with his plus athleticism and by being the ultimate technician. When you watch tape of Harris, you immediately see his ability to win with leverage. He excels as a pass protector and is above average in the running game.

For my money, I see Harris as an immediate upgrade to last year’s starter Matt Skura. There is no doubt that the Ravens need to inject some talent into the interior offensive line, and selecting a player like Harris in the fourth round is an absolute steal.

Round 4, Compensatory Pick: Troy Pride Jr., CB Notre Dame 

The Ravens are pretty loaded at the cornerback position, as their roster has Marcus Peters, Marlon Humphrey, and the returning Tavon Young. With that said, Jimmy Smith is a free agent, and it seems the club is likely to decline an option on Brandon Carr, so cornerback depth is certainly a need.

We all know that Troy Pride, Jr. is extremely fast. He is projected to run one of the fastest 40-yard dash times at the NFL Scouting Combine this week. Also, Pride brings good size, fluidity, and quickness.

He may not see a lot of playing time in his rookie season, but he will provide quality depth with the ability to develop into a future starter for the Ravens.

Round 4, Compensatory Pick: D.J. Wonnum, EDGE South Carolina 

The Ravens have been able to find very good pass-rushers in the middle rounds of the NFL Draft since their inception in 1996. One of those players, Matt Judon, is a free agent this year. It will be tough for Baltimore to resign him due to their current salary cap constraints.

D.J. Wonnum will need time and coaching, so big-time production in 2020 shouldn’t be expected. With that said, there are some tools that Wonnum brings to the table, which should excite fans for the future. He is a stout run defender and is a productive pass-rusher, which are traits to build off of.

Round 5, Pick 153: Hakeem Adeniji, OT Kansas 

Every year, it seems like the Ravens are able to find a player in the 5th round that turns out to be an eventual Pro Bowl talent. My pick for the 2020 NFL Draft is Kansas offensive lineman Hakeem Adeniji. At the next level, I forecast that Adeniji kicks inside to guard and will develop into a high-quality player. He is a big, powerful mauler who possesses tremendous length.

Overall in this Ravens 7-round NFL mock draft, two studs are added on the defensive side of the ball in Queen and Gallimore, both of who should contribute at a high level from day one. Mims gives them a legitimate threat to Miles Boykin for the second receiver job. The selections of Pride, Jr., and Wonnum bolster the depth on the defensive side of the ball. Harris and Adeniji give Baltimore two future starters along the offensive line. The Baltimore Ravens are loaded and a serious threat to win Super Bowl 55.

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