In the weeks leading up to April's
, I will highlight four players at each position whom the Ravens could target at different stages in the draft -- from their top pick to their Mr. Irrelevant. In this post, I will focus on cornerbacks.
Remember, I'm not saying the Ravens will take a cornerback with their first-round pick, though it's a possibility with
set to become free agents. I'm just giving you a player whom they might consider if they decided to go that route. Here are four corners they could have in their sights:
Round 1: Jimmy Smith, Colorado.
The draft stock of Smith is the most volatile among first-round prospects. He is a top-15 talent with height, speed and cover skills, but some teams have reportedly
after chatting with him about his off-the-field transgressions. That’s why Smith might be available when the Ravens are on the clock late in the first round. And if he’s there,
’s Mel Kiper Jr. thinks the Ravens would snatch Smith up. "He has a chance to be a steal if his attitude matches his skill-set,” Kiper
. "A burner with shut-down skills, good ball awareness and elite size for the position, he adds immediate depth with the chance to start early."
Rounds 2-3: Ras-I Dowling, Virginia.
The Ravens, whose regulars at cornerback last season were all shorter than six feet, must bulk up at the position. The 6-foot-1, 198-pound Dowling ran a 4.40 40-yard dash at the scouting combine, but he pulled his hamstring, again raising concerns about his durability. If his stock drops, Kiper believes Dowling
Rounds 4-5: Shareece Wright, USC.
Ruled academically ineligible for the 2009 season, Wright bounced back last season, racking up 73 tackles and three sacks for the Trojans. He had a solid Senior Bowl, and there was buzz on the Internet
in preparation. The Ravens love players who love football, so Wright’s name will be one to remember draft weekend.
Rounds 6-7: DeMarcus Van Dyke, Miami.
Van Dyke, the other Miami cornerback -- the Ravens have been linked to his Hurricanes teammate Brandon Harris -- ran the fastest 40-yard dash at this year’s combine. The Ravens
, but that blazing 4.28 probably opened eyes over at the Castle.
OK, your turn: