Will Taco Charlton or Jabrill Peppers soon play for John Harbaugh after playing for Jim Harbaugh?
Charlton and Peppers are both draft prospects from Michigan, who play positions where the Ravens need help.
Charlton is an edge-rusher with size, who amassed 10 sacks during his last 10 games at Michigan. Veteran pass rusher Elvis Dumervil is a possible salary cap casualty with the Ravens, and Terrell Suggs will turn 35 years old in October.
It’s not a reach to picture the Ravens drafting Charlton if he’s still on the board at No. 16.
In fact, that’s exactly what Daniel Jeremiah of NFL.com has the Ravens doing in his latest mock draft– taking Charlton at No. 16.
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Peppers is a versatile safety who is also an elite punt returner. The Ravens are looking to get younger in the secondary. Eric Weddle is coming off an excellent season at safety, but do the Ravens want to go another season with 31-year-old Lardarius Webb as the starter next to Weddle?
The knock on Peppers is that he doesn’t create enough turnovers, with one career interception at Michigan. Some scouts no longer view Peppers as a first-round pick. And the Ravens can’t afford another draft mistake at safety, after regrettably using a first-round pick (2013) on Matt Elam, and a third-round pick (2014) on Terrance Brooks.
However, nobody disputes that Peppers is a dangerous returner, and perhaps the most versatile prospect in the draft. Peppers played safety, linebacker, and wide receiver among other positions at Michigan, and Ravens defensive coordinator Dean Pees loves versatile players, just as special teams coordinator Jerry Rosburg loves game-breaking returners.
Didn’t the Ravens just spend a season hoping that Devin Hester had plenty left as a returner, when he clearly did not? Plugging Peppers into the Ravens’ special teams unit would give them a playmaking dimension they lacked in 2016. If Peppers slides into the second day of the draft, he could become a steal if plugged into the right system.
Ravens coach John Harbaugh can pick up the phone and call his brother to get the inside intel on both Peppers and Charlton. By the draft, the Ravens will know as much about Peppers and Charlton as anyone on the board. Who knows? Maybe Charlton and Peppers are not done playing for a coach named Harbaugh.