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Draft Review with Matt DeLima, Part II

Our second half of our interview with Fantasy sports writer and blogger Matt DeLima. If you missed the first half of our interview, go to: Draft Review I.

6.  BGR: Asa Jackson, Cornerback, Cal Poly-SLO has excellent cover skills, speed and can compete in the return game.  In fact, there wasn’t much negative about him other than his height (5-11) and that he played for a smaller program. With a talented pool of cornerbacks on the Ravens roster can he make the team?

Matt: Jackson will have to make a name for himself by showing off those ball skills. He was excellent in the FCS and now he’s in the NFL. He needs to play bigger than his size and prove he can be a reliable returner as well. Baltimore did the smart thing here because they needed corner depth and a returner and they’ve got a guy who can earn his roster spot by performing both roles.


7. BGR: What is your take on safety Christian Thompson? Eric DeCosta said he was a player the team had in their radar early in the draft process.

Matt: The draw with Thompson is that he is an SEC talent (originally played at Auburn) and he’s got a long frame and good speed. The foundation for success is there and he can come in to play special teams immediately. There’s talent to be found in the MEAC and since the Ravens don’t need him immediately, they can groom him. This luxury is what allows Baltimore to take developmental players in the middle rounds. Thompson is precisely that.


8. BGR:  It seems seventh rounder DeAngelo Tyson, DL has taken a back seat in the media. There isn’t much about him regarding scouting reports. But, by all accounts he has some excellent tools and did play in one of the best divisions in college, the SEC. The past few years the Ravens have selected defensive line prospects late in the draft like Arthur Jones and Pernell McPhee, is Tyson another gem? Your take?

 Matt:  3-4 linemen are tough to find and Tyson is a former four-star high school prospect according to I remember when he came out because most of the SEC schools were looking at him. For Tyson, he will need to show that he’s willing to put in the work. From all accounts, he’s a hard-working young man and he’ll have to be in order to earn his keep. This is a win-win for the Ravens because they’ll know almost immediately whether or not Tyson has the aptitude to be a NFL player. While some teams place a high priority on stamina or motor, a rotational player like Tyson only needs to contribute maybe a dozen plays per game. If they can coach him up to fulfill that kind of role, that’s a steal in Round 7.


9. BGR:  Overall it seemed the Ravens were caught a little of guard in this year’s draft because they said many teams had similar draft boards. The Ravens said it has to do with all the access to information in today’s game. Does this change teams emphasis on obtaining more scouts?

Matt: It really depends on the team and whether they trust their scouts. So often you hear about a pick may have been a favorite of the owner or the GM. The question then becomes, how much influence or how relevant is a scout’s opinion when it’s time to make the pick? Baltimore, as I mentioned, appears to be a team that puts a lot of stock into the entire staff. They go after small school players and they draft players from the National Champs. The Ravens have been the model of consistency so whatever it is they do, more teams should be trying to emulate their plan. It seems that what Baltimore does best is identify where they need improvement and find versatile athletes who can fulfill multiple roles.


Baltimore Gridiron Report would like to thank Matt for taking time to contribute to our draft Q&A series:

Q&A with Matt DeLima (March 2012)

Q&A with Matt DeLima, Part I (April)  and Part II (April 2012) 

Matt DeLima is the editor of and contributes his Fantasy sports insight to FFToolbox.comand Follow him on Twitter @mattkdelima

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One Response to “Draft Review with Matt DeLima, Part II”

  1. joe smith says:

    Went to ravens camp last thursday. Autograph session was at 1200 PM.

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