Vernon Hargreaves, CB, Florida
How do you win multiple Super Bowls when you have only 3 starters from your Super Bowl win in 2012 (QB Joe Flacco, G Marshal Yanda and LB Terrell Suggs)?
The current champions, Denver Broncos, is struggling to keep their roster together this off season. The Ravens won the Super Bowl 38 months ago and within the 3 seasons have reached the playoffs once. The Ravens finished last season with a 5-11 record in a difficult AFC North. The 49ers looks to be in a rebuilding process; who lost 34-31 in the 2012 Super Bowl. The Ravens are not yet in a rebuild mode but they are restocking.
These are the issues the Ravens are facing this offseason:
- Sadly they are grieving over the lost of a young DB. Tray Walker, 23, injured March 17 when he was riding a dirt bike and was taken to a hospital, where he died the next day from his injuries. He was a young talent drafted last year; they were developing him into a thin position of the team. Jimmy Smith is the #1 CB and last year starter Lardarius Webb is moving to Safety.
- Joe Flacco is recovering from a torn ACL suffered in November 2015.
- They came up with three W's in the free agency. Signed Wallace, Watson, & Weddle.
- O. Perry Walker's Mike Wallace was signed to restock at WR after Steve Smith Sr. retired. He will start opposite 2nd year WR Bernard Pearamen who had a disappointing rookie year.
- They took our TE Ben Watson to help Joe Flacco and the passing game. He can also mentor TE Dennis Pitta and TE Maxx Williams.
- Safety Eric Weddle has been an anchor of the defense in San Diego and the Ravens hopes he can be similar to Ed Reed. He is their starter until they develop a replacement.
Who will start next to C.J. Mosley? Courtney Upshaw signed with the Falcons and ILB Daryl Smith signed with the Buccaneers leaving spots open at LB. Elvis Dumervile and Terrel Suggs, when healthy, are two elite OLBs. Another good ILB can make the Ravens LB Core one of the best in the NFL.
ILB Competition: "There's going to be competition," Head Coach John Harbaugh said. "That's how we like it."
- If the Ravens keep LT Eugene Monroe, drafting an offensive lineman at No. 6 is not a priority. G Kelechi Osemele signed with the Raiders.
- Before selecting WR Breshad Perriman last year, the Ravens have selected a defensive player with their first pick since drafting Blindside Michael Oher in 2009.
According to Jeff Zrebiec at The Baltimore Sun; the Ravens want to go defense with the No. 6 overall pick.
"There will be plenty of talk about taking the ‘best player available,' but it seems that everybody around the Ravens sure hopes that ‘best player' plays defense," Zrebiec wrote. "Bisciotti's comments last week made it even clearer that the team is focused on adding impact defensive players in next month's NFL draft."
Owner Steve Bisciotti already said he doesn't expect to move up in the draft, so the Ravens are going to wait patiently and see who comes off the board in front of them.
Lardarius Webb is moving from corner to safety. Despite re-signing Shareece Wright and keeping Kyle Arrington, the Ravens need more depth at corner. Hargreaves is the kind of talent who could be a nickel back immediately, and push Wright and Arrington for the starting job opposite Jimmy Smith. If the Ravens think Hargreaves is good enough potentially to start next season, why not take him, and grab a young corner that can help them for years?
Hargreaves carries the football genes of his father, Vernon II, who was on UConn's 100th anniversary's team and has coached linebackers and special teams for multiple schools (USF, Houston, Arkansas). He was the National Defensive Player of the Year by the Touchdown Club of Columbus as a senior high school, a finalist for the Florida Mr. Football award, and the Most Valuable Player of the Under Armour All-American game. So it was no surprise that he worked his way on the field as a true freshman, ranking among the leaders in the SEC with 14 passes defended, including three interceptions. Hargreaves not only earned first-team All-SEC honors in all three of his seasons in Gainesville, but also lined up multiple All-American honors in 2014 (three interceptions, 13 pass breakups) and 2015 (four interceptions, four pass break-ups) due to his playmaking ability.
Premier, quick twitch athlete with explosion pulsing through his hips and feet. Instant click-and-close action to explode forward and attack the throw. Vertical springs to go up and over receivers at the high point. Smooth, controlled backpedal with ability to weave and mirror route progressions. Plays with outstanding body control and balance. Feet are electric. Can overwhelm lesser opponents across from him. Instinctive and urgent in his play. Excels from press, off or zone coverage. Fiery competitor with a strong desire to own the pass. Has quick, soft hands. Posted 38 passes defensed and 10 interceptions over last three years. Could see early kick or punt return action. Unwilling to stay blocked and doesn't hesitate for one moment in run support and against wide receiver screens. Chest-up tackler who runs through his target.
Lean, wiry frame. Aggressive nature allows teams to bait him with double moves. Quicker than fast and doesn't have closing speed to make mistakes underneath and still recover on top. Allowed 16.5 yards per completion this season. Scouts worry about his height outside. Big receivers will pose a challenge on the next level. Had his two worst games of the season in SEC Championship game against Alabama and Citrus Bowl against Michigan. Willingness to throw body around in run support could cause him to break down.
NFL Comparison: Joe Haden
While scouts have voiced some concerns about Hargreaves' size and recovery speed, you won't find anyone who doesn't admire his competitiveness and consistency of production. Hargreaves has a level of suddenness and explosiveness in his movements that should always have him near the ball. With top-notch ball skills and exceptional instincts that drew praise from Alabama's Nick Saban, Hargreaves possesses the football makeup to become a Pro Bowl cornerback.
"Crab cakes and football."
Thanks to all the CSC members who participated in this year's community mock draft. Without your help, none of this would be possible.
Below are the complete results from our community mock draft.
Catch up with all of the mock draft selections in our 2016 CSC Community Mock Draft Hub.
|Leremy Tunsil, OT, Ole Miss
|Jared Goff, QB, California
|Jalen Ramsey, DB, Florida State
|DeForest Buckner, DE, Oregon
|Myles Jack, LB, UCLA
|New York Giants
|Los Angeles Rams
|New York Jets
|New England (Forfeited)