The NFL Draft is only days away, so who are the Ravens going to pick with the 8th pick in the upcoming draft? The way I see it there are a few scenarios to consider.
Jake Long is #1, that is a given.
St. Louis could go in a couple different directions. I see them taking Chris Long considering I believe he is one of the top 2 players in the draft. If they don't take Long, they could go for Glenn Dorsey. Taking Dorsey might mean the Rams would move Adam Carriker back to end. Either pick would solidify the Defensive line for years to come.
Atlanta also has a couple of options depending on what St. Louis decides to do. If the Rams pass on Dorsey, he will probably end up in Atlanta. If Dorsey is gone by the #3 pick, Atlanta has the option of choosing Matt Ryan to fill the need at QB.
With the #4 pick, The Oakland Raiders have a pretty easy choice in my opinion. If Darren McFadden is available, they should grab him. That would mean the Raiders solidified their backfield with two top tier prospects in back to back years. JaMarcus Russell and Run DMC could be an unstoppable tandem in the NFL.
However, the Raiders may decide to go for Defense and draft Chris Long if the Rams pass at the 2 spot. If the order pans out to be J.Long, C. Long, Ryan, then the Raiders could also end up with a Warren Sapp replacement in Glenn Dorsey or Sedrick Ellis. All three options are smart picks--I like where the Raiders sit in this draft.
At #5, the Kansas City Chiefs have plenty of options. The recent Jared Allen trade means there is a need at DE. If Chris Long is still available, I believe the Chiefs will take him. If not, they will have the options--Vernon Gholston is the second best DE in the draft, and will most likely be available at #5.
Tackle is definitely a need, and Brandon Albert and Ryan Clady will be available. The Chiefs could also take Matt Ryan if the Falcons pass on him.
The Jets at #6 will try to obtain Darren McFadden; however, he may be long gone to the Raiders at #3. If that is the case I see them taking Vernon Gholston because Crhis Long will be long gone with 3 previous teams possibly filling a need at DE.
It is not fair that the Patriots have the #7 pick, but all us non-Patriot fans have to live with it. They have one of the most unique positions in the draft because they do not really have a glaring needs. In addition, all of the 6 "top tier" players in this years draft may be gone by #7.
There is always the possiblity of someone slipping, but you cannot always count on that. So at #7, The Patriots will look at CB's, DE's, and LB's. Keith Rivers is the best LB in the draft, so that would be the smart pick for the Patriots considering their LB core is getting old.
If they decide to go CB, They will look at a few prospects: Aqib Talib, Domonique Rodgers-Cromartie, and Mike Jenkins. All three have the potential to be shut-down CB's in the NFL.
Then the Ravens sit at #8. Since Steve McNair retired, there is an obvious need to fill the QB spot. Two teams may pick Matt Ryan, the best QB in the draft, so the Ravens should not expect to get a QB in the first round unless they trade back to get Joe Flacco or Chad Henne (they could also try to get one of the QB's in the early 2nd round).
The Ravens do not expect Jonathon Ogden to stick around much longer, so LT is a definite need. If the Chiefs pass on Ryan Clady and Brandon Albert, they should be available at #8.
DT is not a need at the moment for the Ravens, but Ozzie Newsome has been known to take the best available player on his draft board. That may mean Sedrick Ellis could fall to the Ravens. Vernon Gholston, Aqib Talib, Domonique Rodgers-Cromartie, and Mike Jenkins are the 3 top CB prospects, and would also fit a need for the Ravens.
There are many scenarios that could pan out for this years draft. I am as excited as anyone to see who falls where, and cannot wait to watch this Saturday.