Ravens rookie tight end Nick Boyle's misstep adds to what has been a miserable year for the Ravens 2015 draft class.
Boyle on Monday was suspended for four games for violating the league's policy on performance-enhancing drugs. With just four games remaining, Boyle's rookie season is over. At least he played, which is more than can be said about the Ravens top draft pick, receiver Breshad Perriman.
How bad has this draft class been? When the Ravens played Miami on Sunday, not one of the Ravens top three draft picks this spring saw the field. The Ravens surely see talent in this group, and it's too early to label the class a bust, but for much of this group, like the Ravens overall, 2015 represents a lost year.
And this is troubling, coming off an underwhelming 2013 draft class that featured Matt Elam, little-used Arthur Brown and the long-departed John Simon among the Ravens first four picks. (Brandon Williams, their third pick in that draft, has been outstanding.)
Here is a brief rundown of each member of the Ravens 2015 draft class:
1st round - Breshad Perriman (WR, Central Florida)
Perriman hurt his knee the first day of training camp, and a 'day-to-day' injury ultimately sidelined him all season. He was working to return to the field when he tweaked his knee again during a pregame workout, and he ultimately landed on injured reserve. The Ravens still don't quite know what they have with their first-round pick, but they have sorely missed the speed and size he was expected to bring to the wide receiver position.
2nd round - Maxx Williams (TE, Minnesota)
Williams started slowly and began the season as the No. 2 tight end, well behind Crockett Gillmore. Williams missed last week with a concussion and has started to come on of late, but it's been a fairly quiet rookie year for the player considered the top tight end in the draft. Williams has 19 catches for 168 yards and a touchdown.
3rd round - Carl Davis (DT, Iowa)
Davis was impressive early and started three of the first five games. But he has been a healthy scratch in each of the past two games. Brent Urban's return from IR has crowded the defensive line picture, but it's clear Davis has fallen down the depth chart since his strong early start.
4th round - Za'Darius Smith (OLB, Kentucky)
Smith has seen limited time on defense this season, though the opportunity has been there after Terrell Suggs' Achilles injury. Smith has made 17 tackles and two sacks, which came on back-to-back plays at Pittsburgh. Smith still could become one of those late-bloomers; Pernell McPhee, the player most often compared to Smith, was a fifth-round pick.
4th round - Buck Allen (RB, USC)
At this point, Allen appears to be the gem of the class. He has seized the moment and run with it after injuries to Justin Forsett and Lorenzo Taliaferro. Allen had 63 yards rushing and 107 yards receiving at Miami and has shown he will be the Ravens No. 1 back for the rest of the season. Admittedly he has faced two terrible run defenses the past two weeks, but Allen's elusiveness and ability as a receiver bode very well.
4th round - Tray Walker (CB, Texas Southern)
Even as the Ravens secondary was struggling terribly early in the season, Walker hardly saw the field on defense, suggesting he is at least a year away and it might have been a reach to take him in the fourth round. The Ravens like his size (6-2, 199) as a corner, but he has been inactive in four of the past five games.
5th round - Nick Boyle (TE, Delaware)
Before his suspension and Allen's emergence, Boyle was probably the most pleasant surprise of the Ravens draft class. Expected to be the No. 3 tight end whose calling card was blocking, Boyle showed good hands and athleticism as a receiver, and Joe Flacco had no hesitation throwing to his fellow Delaware Blue Hen. Boyle's suspension-shortened season ends with 18 catches for 153 yards.
5th round - Robert Myers (G, Tennessee State)
Myers was a rarity for the Ravens -- a draft pick who was cut in the same season. But Myers, who briefly joined the Indianapolis Colts, is back with the Ravens practice squad.
6th round - Darren Waller (WR, Georgia Tech)
Viewed as a project with good size (6-6, 245) coming out of Tech's triple option offense, Waller played in six games before ending his season on injured reserve (hamstring). He made two catches for 18 yards.
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