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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Marshal Yanda recognized as a best pick, 2006-2010



Draft breakdown: Best and worst '06-'10

April 27, 2011

By Jamison Hensley

A look at the best and worst picks in the Ravens' drafts:

2006

Best: Haloti Ngata, DT, first round. The Ravens really got great value with safety Dawan Landry (fifth round) and punter Sam Koch (sixth). Still, getting Ngata with the 12th overall pick was a steal. Guessing Tennessee (took Vince Young with third overall) and Arizona (Matt Leinart with the 10th) are regretting their decisions.

Worst: David Pittman, CB, third round. The Ravens wanted Ohio State cornerback Ashton Youboty, who went earlier in the third. So, they settled with Pittman, who lasted two full seasons and will go down as one of the team’s biggest third-round busts.

2007

Best: Marshal Yanda, guard-tackle, third round. Yanda is the epitome of what the Ravens want out of an offensive line. He’s tough, mean and versatile. Put him in at guard or tackle and Yanda will perform at a high level.

Worst: Yamon Figurs, WR, third round. Just 15 picks before taking Yanda, the Ravens made the ill-advised move of taking a track runner instead of a football player. The frustrating part was when Figurs lost the courage to return kicks up the middle of the field.

2008


Best: Ray Rice, RB, second round. The Ravens would have taken Rice with their original second-round pick (at No. 38). But they were able to trade back to No. 55 and still get Rice along with an additional third-round pick (for Tom Zbikowski). Seattle used that 38th overall pick on tight end John Carlson.

Worst: Tavares Gooden, LB, third round. He was touted as “Baby Ray,” another fast linebacker out of Miami. Over the past two seasons, Gooden has lost the starting job to two undrafted rookies, Dannell Ellerbe and Jameel McClain. Durability is a big question mark.

2009

Best: Michael Oher, OT, first round. Considered a top-10 pick, Oher slid down the first round after San Francisco went with wide receiver Michael Crabtree instead. While Oher might not be the answer on “The Blind Side,” he still has the potential to be a Pro Bowl right tackle.

Worst: Paul Kruger, DE, second round. In two seasons, he’s had more changes in position (defensive end to linebacker to defensive end again) than sacks (one).

2010

Best: David Reed, WR, fifth round. He led the NFL with a 29.3-yard kickoff return average as a rookie. While he didn’t have a catch as a rookie, Reed should have an opportunity to compete for the No. 3 job this season.

Worst: Sergio Kindle, LB, second round. Despite the red flags, the Ravens decided to gamble and use their top pick in the 2010 draft on Kindle. He suffered a potential career-ending head injury when he fell down two flights of stairs before training camp and then got arrested for drunken driving. There are no guarantees he’ll ever suit up for the Ravens.

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