Ravens Draft Focus: Late round flyers and UDFAs
Seemingly every year the Ravens find players at the end of the Draft or in the undrafted free agent market that become major contributors to the team’s success. Bart Scott, Dannell Ellerbe and Justin Tucker are just a few of the players who never heard their name called in the NFL draft that we have appreciated as Ravens fans over the past decade, and some of the best players in the NFL have been late round draft picks or went completely undrafted. So who should we be on the lookout for this year? Below are a few of the names to know that could be late round steals or priority free agents in the 2016 Draft class.
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Moritz Boehringer, WR, Germany: Boehringer recently turned a lot of heads when he worked out at the Florida Atlantic Pro Day last Friday. The 6’4”, 227 lb prospect ran the 40 in 4.41 seconds while also posting a 39” vertical, 131” broad jump and 6.65 second 3C drill. While those numbers are Calvin Johnson-like, it is also important to remember his level of competition in Germany was not close to BCS.
Quinton Jefferson, DT, Maryland: The local product is a bit undersized for a DT and needs to improve against the run, but he possesses impressive quickness and is a quality pass-rusher posting 6.5 sacks and 12.5 TFL for the Terps this past year. He could slot in well as a 3T on passing downs while developing his all-around game.
Dean Lowry, DE, Northwestern: Lowry possesses ideal size and bulk to play 5T for the Ravens and while he isn’t an explosive athlete, he understands leverage and plays with a great motor. He doesn’t look to be much of a pass-rusher, but he could fit well as an early down run-stuffer with upside.
Eric Mac Lain, OL, Clemson: Mac Lain is a converted TE who will be best suited to play OG in the NFL. He is well built and athletic, but is still fairly raw technique-wise. He moves well for a guard and would be a nice fit in the Ravens ZBS.
Elandon Roberts, LB, Houston: In Roberts’ first full season starting for the Cougars he led the nation with 88 solo tackles, including 19 TFL, and was the heart and soul of their defense. Undersized but determined, Roberts has a nose for the football and a tenacity that should translate to the NFL.
Keivarae Russell, CB, Notre Dame: After missing the 2014 season due to academic reasons, Russell was a full-time starter for the Irish in 2015. At 5”11, 192 lbs, he has good size for the position and posted impressive numbers at Notre Dame’s Pro Day, highlighted by a 4.43 40, 38.5” vertical and 134” broad jump. The off the field concerns could cause him to slide, but he has the physical tools to be a good CB in the NFL.
Demarcus Robinson, WR, Florida: Robinson is another prospect with NFL talent, but enough baggage off the field for him to potentially go undrafted. He failed multiple drug tests in college and was suspended 4 different times, however he possesses good size and excellent body control and strong hands. Robinson has proven he can be a quality receiver in the SEC, but he will have to do much more to prove he can keep his head on straight in the NFL.
Alex McAlister, Edge, Florida: Another talented prospect from Florida who couldn’t seem to get his act together, McAlister is an interesting combination of athleticism and length that is coveted by many teams on the edge. McAlister participated at the combine and posted some impressive numbers, but questions surrounding a suspension and eventual dismissal from his college program may push him off teams’ boards.