With the #28 pick of the 2020 NFL Draft, the Baltimore Ravens selected LSU linebacker Patrick Queen. The high-upside player was a one a year starter for the national champions in Baton Rouge. Also, with #1 pick Joe Burrow, Queen was the second LSU product to join the AFC North on draft night.
In my first article, I believed Baltimore would avoid the linebacker position. Similarly, all signs pointed to GM Eric DeCosta devaluing the position. However, this pick was very DeCosta-esque. Queen was the fourth fastest linebacker at the NFL Combine. While Queen is a linebacker, he shows the pass coverage ability that rivals a box safety. Queens’ athleticism will be vital. Due to his ability to get from sideline-to-sideline, get home on blitzes and guard tight ends and running backs in the passing game will play a large role in the 2020 season.
In a post-draft presser, DeCosta stated that Queen was the highest remaining player on their board and did fit a position of need. It was a scenario that was too great to pass up. In the same presser, DeCosta mentioned the Ravens called ahead in search of a trade up. However, they could not find any offers. Seems like Baltimore may have looked into moving up for receiver CeeDee Lamb.
Raven defensive coordinator Don ‘Wink’ Martindale loves do-it-all players. In a division with Austin Hooper, Eric Ebron, and Joe Mixon, Queen will be able to man up these pivotal players. Certainly, Queen will help with Travis Kelce, the Kansas City tight end. Queen comes in slightly undersized at 6 foot tall and 229 pounds. Regardless, he shows the potential to hold down the middle of the field for the foreseeable future.
Furthermore, in a press conference on the Baltimore Ravens app, Queen said “I feel like I’m going to bring everything to the table that the defense is known for. There is no one piece to my game, I bring it all.” Most importantly, this mentality is exactly the type of player Baltimore has been searching for in their defense.
The Ravens and DeCosta have a busy day two ahead of them. Most noteworthy, the Ravens have four picks tonight. For this reason, the Ravens will be able to control the board and move up and down if preferred. With picks 55, 60, 92 and 106, expect Baltimore to explore the receiver, defensive line, secondary and interior offensive line markets. However, do not rule out Baltimore debating about a running back selection tonight either.