NFL draft: The No. 28 pick from 2010-2019

A 14-2 record got the Baltimore Ravens to the playoffs but falling early to the Tennessee Titans cemented their spot in the 2020 NFL draft. Barring a trade, the Ravens hold the No. 28 pick in the first round, which might not afford them an immediate starter but a prospect capable of growing into a superstar.

Let’s take a look at the last decade at which players have been selected 28th as a preview of what might be for Baltimore in 2020.

2010 – Miami Dolphins, DE Jared Odrick

Odrick spent the first five years of his career with the Dolphins, with his best year…
Odrick spent the first five years of his career with the Dolphins, with his best year arguably coming in 2012 — starting 12 games and finished with 5.0 sacks to go with 12 tackles for loss. He would only start all 16 games once for the Dolphins, in his final season in 2014. Odrick signed as a free agent with the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2015, and in his first season, he posted 5.5 sacks along with 10 tackles for loss. But he played only six games the following season and hasn’t been on an NFL roster since February 2017.

2011 – New Orleans Saints, RB Mark Ingram

It wouldn’t be too much of a stretch to call Ingram the best player taken at…
It wouldn’t be too much of a stretch to call Ingram the best player taken at this spot over the last decade. Despite only starting 79 of his 121 games, Ingram has amassed 7,025 rushing yards and 60 touchdowns on the ground along with 254 receptions for 1,845 yards through the air. He also has 10 receiving scores, five of which came with the Ravens in 2019. Ingram has been named to three Pro Bowls since 2011, while the other nine players took 28th overall since 2010 have earned precisely zero Pro Bowl nods combined.

2012 – Green Bay Packers, LB Nick Perry

Perry was a rotational player in his first four seasons with the team, never starting more…
Perry was a rotational player in his first four seasons with the team, never starting more than six games in a season, nor posting more than 4.0 sacks in a year. But after signing a one year deal in 2016, Perry appeared to have finally broken out. He started 12 games and finished with 11.0 sacks, 12 tackles for loss and 16 quarterback hits. These numbers earned him a five-year, $59 million contract with the Packers. He put up another 7.0 sacks and 14 QB hits a year later but was still unable to play a full season, playing in only 12 games. Perry started all nine of his games in 2018, but his sack total fell to 1.5. He was released prior to the 2019 season and spent the year out of the NFL.

2013 – Denver Broncos, DT Sylvester Williams

Sylvester Williams was taken by the Denver Broncos at this spot in the 2013 NFL Draft.…
Sylvester Williams was taken by the Denver Broncos at this spot in the 2013 NFL Draft. He started 48 of his 60 games for the Broncos between 2013 and 2016 but never played more than 56% of the snaps in a season. He was hardly a stats monster in this time either, with just 5.5 sacks to go with 17 tackles for loss and 14 QB hits. Williams has played for four different teams since the start of the 2017 season, appearing in 34 games. In these games for the Titans, Lions, Dolphins, and Chargers he has zero sacks, and four tackles for loss. He hasn’t hit a quarterback since 2016.

2014 – Carolina Panthers, WR Kelvin Benjamin

Kelvin Benjamin became a part of the historic 2014 wide receiver class when the Carolina Panthers…
Kelvin Benjamin became a part of the historic 2014 wide receiver class when the Carolina Panthers took him at the No.28 spot of that year. His numbers as a rookie were pretty good, posting 1,008 and nine touchdowns. His catch rate of 50.3% was far from impressive, however. A preseason injury kept him out of the whole 2015 season, a year in which the Panthers made it to the Super Bowl. Benjamin managed 63 catches for 941 yards and seven touchdowns on his return in 2016. But things never got any better after this. Benjamin struggled with his conditioning throughout his time with the Panthers and was traded to the Bills during the 2017 season. In 18 games with the team, he posted 39 catches for 571 yards and two scores. The Bills cut him during the 2018 season, but not before he publicly ripped his former quarterback Cam Newton. He was last seen running wind sprints for the Kansas City Chiefs in three games at the end of the 2018 campaign.

2015 – Detroit Lions, G Laken Tomlinson

Laken Tomlinson was the first player from Duke to be drafted in the first round for…
Laken Tomlinson was the first player from Duke to be drafted in the first round for almost 30 years when the Detroit Lions selected him in 2015. He started 24 games in his first two seasons with the Lions, although he seemed to have fallen out of favor midway through his second year when he played a grand total of 34 snaps in six games between weeks 7 and 13. Tomlinson was traded to the San Francisco 49ers prior to the 2017 season. He missed that season’s opener but has started the last 47 games for them.

2016 – San Francisco 49ers, G Joshua Garnett

The 49ers hoped they were getting a long-term solution at guard when they took Joshua Garnett…
The 49ers hoped they were getting a long-term solution at guard when they took Joshua Garnett in 2016. He had won the Outland Trophy, awarded to the best college football interior lineman in 2015. But it didn’t happen. Garnett started 11 of his 15 games as a rookie, playing 69% of the 49ers total snaps. But a knee injury cost him his entire 2017 season and he was strictly a little-used backup during the 2018 campaign. The 49ers cut him prior to the 2019 season which he spent out of the league entirely.

2017 – Dallas Cowboys, DE Taco Charlton

The Dallas Cowboys have a spotty recent history with regards to drafting pass rushers, and a…
The Dallas Cowboys have a spotty recent history with regards to drafting pass rushers, and a prime example of this is Taco Charlton. The team selected Charlton No.28 in 2017 after a college career that saw him rack up 19.0 sacks for Michigan. He didn’t start a game as a rookie but still contributed 3.0 sacks and three tackles for loss.  He started the first seven games of his second season, but after playing on 73% and 84% of the defensive snaps in Weeks 1 and 2 he never played more than 60% in any game. Charlton also had just one sack all season. Charlton’s relationship with the team began to breakdown during the early days of the 2019 season when he was a healthy scratch for the first two games. The Cowboys were reportedly trying to trade Charlton during this time. But when no takers could be found and fellow defensive end Randy Gregory was returning from one of his suspensions, the team simply released him. He was claimed off waivers by the Miami Dolphins shortly afterward and in ten games in 2019, Charlton had 5.0 sacks (one more than he managed in his two seasons with the Cowboys).

2018 – Pittsburgh Steelers, S Terrell Edmunds

Edmunds has been virtually an every-down player for the Pittsburgh Steelers since they used the 28th…
Edmunds has been virtually an every-down player for the Pittsburgh Steelers since they used the 28th overall selection in 2018 to take him. Yet despite his never being off the field (he has played 2,002 defensive snaps over the last two seasons) Edmunds never seems to make any plays. He has one career interception and a single sack, while his next forced fumble will be his first. Edmunds was also something of a liability in pass coverage in 2019, allowing 37 receptions for 537 and five touchdowns. He did make more tackles in 2019, 105 from 78 as a rookie. But his missed tackle rate jumped from 6.0% to 9.5%. Drafting defensive backs is not an area of success for the Steelers of late, and Edmunds has a big season ahead of him if he is to prove that he is not another blown selection in this spot.

2019 – Los Angeles Chargers, DT Jerry Tillery

You’d be guilty of gross over-exaggeration if you were to class Jerry Tillery’s rookie season as…
You’d be guilty of gross over-exaggeration if you were to class Jerry Tillery’s rookie season as a success. The Los Angeles Chargers took him with the No. 28 pick last year, and the rookie played in 15 games with three starts. Tillery played more than 50% of the Chargers defensive snaps in a game just once and was on the field for just 36% over the season. He had 1.5 sacks in his first five games, but only 0.5 the rest of the way. Still, the Chargers as a whole were disappointing in 2019, and it wouldn’t be fair to write Tillery off at this early stage.

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