It’s no secret that the Baltimore Ravens had serious issues with their secondary last season and it didn’t help that five defensive backs were placed on the IR. The biggest loss was Jimmy Smith, who had gained recognition as one of the best man-to-man corners in the NFL. Lardarius Webb had the full weight of the secondary on his shoulders and he wasn’t ready for it, as the Nichols State product struggled and didn’t look the same after his second torn ACL.
Webb will more than likely be asked to take a pay cut next season and will return with Smith, an often injured Asa Jackson and a raw product in Rashaad Melvin. This means the Ravens will have to address secondary needs in this upcoming draft and there are a few names to watch out for.
Michigan State cornerback Trae Waynes and Washington cornerback Marcus Peters will be big names to look out for, but the two will likely be taken before Baltimore picks. A viable option at the No. 26 spot is Wake Forest cornerback Kevin Johnson.
Johnson measures around 6’1” and is a physical cornerback. He played four years at Wake Forest and finished with career totals of 189 tackles and seven interceptions. Another great thing about the corner: He’s from Maryland.
The Clarksville native, who played high school and college football with wide receiver Michael Campanaro, shows off impressive traits on film, as he has knack at attacking the football. Johnson is also good against the run, as the highlight film displays him making plays down and across the field to make the tackle.
Johnson finished All-ACC this season and Mel Kiper had him being picked by the Steelers in his latest Mock Draft. ESPN Scouts Inc. rates the corner as the 32nd best player in the draft.
The Ravens have a tall cornernack in Smith, who measures at 6’2”, and pairing him with Johnson could create some nightmare matchups for opposing quarterbacks. Johnson would be able to take over as the No. 3 cornerback on the depth chart if he plays well in the preseason and could be a nice surprise if he uses his frame to his advantage in the NFL.