Last week's Five for Friday post focused on the best draft picks in Ravens history. I enjoyed reading your comments about my list, so please keep them coming. This week's topic, a spin-off of last week's post, is sure to get you guys talking, too.
The Ravens personnel staff is at the NFL's annual meat market in Indianapolis this week, prodding prospects to see which ones will pan out in the pros. Ravens GM Ozzie Newsome has hit plenty of home runs in his tenure, but he has also had his fair share of whiffs during the draft. So let's look at the picks the Ravens have missed over the years.
My criteria for determining the Ravens' biggest draft busts are pretty simple. I only looked at first- and second-rounders in our Ravens draft database. To be evaluated for the list, a player has to have three years under his belt. That means Paul Kruger, Sergio Kindle and Terrence Cody -- three players some fans have already given up on -- aren't eligible. And, as was the case in my last list, the round in which the player was selected plays into the ranking.
So without further ado, here are the five biggest draft busts in Ravens' history:
5. Patrick Johnson (second round, 42nd overall, 1998): An Olympic-caliber sprinter at Oregon, Johnson made 60 catches for 929 yards and seven touchdowns in five seasons with the Ravens (over two stints), and he caught one pass for eight yards in Super Bowl XXXV. Johnson's underwhelming career, which ended in the Canadian Football League, was a sign of things to come with the Ravens drafting wide receivers.
4. DeRon Jenkins (second round, 55th overall, 1996): This cornerback out of Tennessee, who started 30 games in his four years with the Ravens, was called DeRon "Third and Long" Jenkins for a reason.
3. Travis Taylor (first round, 10th overall, 2000): Taylor actually had a decent career, hauling in 312 passes for 4,017 yards and 22 touchdowns as he stuck around in the NFL for nine seasons. But the Ravens drafted him in the top-10 to become a star, and like so many former Florida wide receivers, that never ended up happening.
2. Dan Cody (second round, 53rd overall, 2005): Injuries derailed Cody's career. Selected by the Ravens out of Oklahoma, the linebacker lost his entire rookie season to a knee injury on the first day of training camp. He would suffer a laundry list of injuries -- a sprained ACL, a torn PCL, torn cartilage in his knee and a broken foot -- before the Ravens released him in 2008. He played in just two games in 2006 and assisted on one tackle.
1. Kyle Boller (first round, 19th overall, 2003): Perhaps the most polarizing player in Ravens history, Boller was selected as the team's quarterback of the future by Brian Billick, who was seduced by the Cal quarterback's big arm. But Boller failed to lead the Ravens to the playoffs in his five seasons in Baltimore, tossing 45 touchdowns and 44 interceptions over that span. Released after the 2008 season, Boller is still in the league, but he's better known as Carrie Prejean's husband, which isn't exactly a bad thing.Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times