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Ravens Mock Draft Roundup: Could the Ravens be taking a center in first round?

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Ravens Mock Draft Roundup: Could the Ravens be taking a center in first round?

This is not a drill. We are only three weeks away from the 2019 NFL Draft in Nashville, Tn.

The Baltimore Ravens currently hold the No. 22 pick in the first round. However, general manager Eric DeCosta hinted that he would not be opposed to trading out of the first round to acquire more picks.

But in the end, who will the Ravens take with their first pick? We've rounded up all of the draft experts predictions. 

NBC Sports Washington's Ben StandigBleacher Report and SB Nation: WR D.K Metcalf, Ole Miss

The Ravens are in desperate need of some help at wide receiver. They currently have only two on their roster who have caught a pass in the NFL in Chris Moore and Willie Snead. 

"This receiver is built like a super hero," Standig writes. "The physically freaky redshirt sophomore averaged a silly 21.9 yards per catch last season and then blew minds with a dazzling showing at the Combine, though concerns with flexibility remain. Metcalf could become the No. 1 WR selected in the draft." 

Sports Illustrated: LB Devin Bush, Michigan

At this point in the offseaon you are well aware that the Ravens have a few holes to fill on their defense. 

SI's Robert Klemko described Bush as "a sideline-to-sideline linebacker to build around as they move on from C.J. Mosley and Eric Weddle and become a more traditional defense less reliant on zone blitzes improvised on the fly."

ESPN's Mel Kiper: C Erik McCoy, Texas A&M

A center in the first round may surprise you. 

Standing at 6-foot-4 and 303 pounds, McCoy's combine profile has him listed as an instant starter.

"McCoy comes gift-wrapped in a thick, strong frame and proved he could hold up to both power (Dexter Lawrence) and athleticism (Quinnen Williams). He has some limitations in space, but he possesses more than enough body control and agility to compete on work-ups and cut-off blocks."

ESPN's Todd McShay and CBS Sports' Ryan Wilson: C Garrett Bradbury, N.C. State

The center position is not seen as a sexy pick in the draft, but Bradbury's skillset is enough to get you excited.

"Bradbury's body control, core strength, movement skills and intelligence check very important boxes for teams looking for immediate center help," his combine profile states. "His pass-pro tape against Clemson proves he can hold his own against a variety of pass-rush flavors while his strength and athleticism make him scheme flexible. He is a candidate to become an early and long-time starter in the league."

NFL Network's Charles Davis and Sporting News: WR Marquise Brown, Oklahoma

Brown, aka "Hollywood," is described as "a skinny, but speedy receiver with game-breaking potential on every snap. His ability to race past cornerbacks and separate deep will require specific coverage and safeties ready to help."

Finding the right fit with Lamar Jackson is of importance for the Ravens and their success in 2019. Davis feels Brown could be that guy.

"HOLLYWOOD!," Davis writes. "I know head coach John Harbaugh recently said he wanted WRs that are "rough and tough," but he will happily welcome Brown, who will put the ball in the end zone for him after QB Lamar Jackson, and the run game, occupy the defense's attention."


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Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Lamar Jackson is his own biggest critic

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Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Lamar Jackson is his own biggest critic

Kick off your Friday with the latest Baltimore Ravens news including how quarterback Lamar Jackson has fared during OTAs.

Player/Team Notes: 

1. Following a January surgery on his left ankle, safety Tony Jefferson remains sidelined after the first week of OTAs. Originally, Jefferson was expected to return 4-6 weeks after surgery. However, now that it's 5 months later, his return timetable is becoming more and more concerning. 

2. Quarterback Lamar Jackson spoke with Ravens media Thursday about his progress not only learning the new offense implemented by Offensive Coordinator, Greg Roman, but learning the names of his new teammates as well. After another day of OTAs, Jackson was his biggest critic despite a solid day of running plays namely passing drills. “I’d say my first day, I sucked,” Jackson said to Ravens media. “Second day, I did better. Today was alright, but it could have been better. I always try to be perfect in practice. It was alright for the first week.”

Looking Ahead:

July 15: 4 p.m. deadline to get a long-term deal done with designated franchise tag players.

The 2019 NFL schedule is set! See the Baltimore Ravens defend the AFC North at M&T Bank Stadium this season. Get your tickets now at www.BaltimoreRavens.com/tickets.

Credit: Rotoworld and Baltimore Ravens for news points.


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'I started to realize that I’m not broken': Steve Smith opens up about mental health and depression

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'I started to realize that I’m not broken': Steve Smith opens up about mental health and depression

Former Carolina Panthers' star receiver Steve Smith spoke in front of a crowd of over 400 people at the fifth annual Wake up for Wellness breakfast that was sponsored by Mental Health America of Central Carolinas.

The 16-year veteran and current NFL Network analyst touched on the importance of seeking help for bouts with depression and spoke of battles that he has faced with the disease.

“On the outside you’ll see a tough exterior. But on the inside, I’m just broken or I believe even more broken than the average man. ... Because when the stadium goes dark and the cheers stop, you’re still looking for that pat on the back,” Smith said. “Throughout my whole career, I struggled with that.”

Smith discussed that in the beginning, he was so concerned about the stigma regarding mental health, that he opted for the professional to meet him for housecalls, and as time passed he realized the importance of speaking up.

“I started to realize that I’m not broken,” he said. “I’m not being sent back to the manufacturer ... I get up every morning and figure it out.”

Smith's comments on the issue came to light just a day after the NFL and NFLPA announced new legislation that focuses on mental well being.

The newly formed Comprehensive Mental Health and Wellness Committee will develop programs for members of the NFL in addition to collaborating with local and national mental health and suicide prevention organizations. Each team will be mandated to retain a Behavioral Health Team Clinician for assistance that will be required to be available to players at the individual team facilities for at least 8-12 hours per week and must conduct mandatory mental health education sessions for players and coaching staff.