Analyzing the potential match of WR Terrace Marshall Jr. with the Ravens

Within the SB Nation 2021 Mock Draft, the Baltimore Beatdown employees got here to the choice to pick Terrace Marshall Jr., WR, LSU with the twenty seventh total choose. This may mark the second straight 12 months the Ravens used a primary spherical choose to dip into the expertise pool that took the world by storm in 2019 when LSU went one of many extra memorable collegiate championship runs in current historical past.

Becoming a member of Patrick Queen in Baltimore, Marshall brings top, velocity and spice. Marshall racked up 23 touchdowns in his remaining 19 video games for LSU. His remaining 10, which got here throughout seven video games in 2020, may be probably the most spectacular.

Contemplating that LSU had 13 gamers drafted following their 2019-20 Nationwide Championship, the cabinet was left barren. That doesn’t embrace Ja’Marr Chase, who opted out forward of the 2020 season and appears primed to be one of many first gamers chosen on this 12 months’s draft. Marshall rose to the event and averaged 100 yards and a landing per sport whereas enjoying an all SEC schedule

Marshall’s manufacturing was additionally spectacular contemplating the drop-off in quarterback play from Joe Burrow to a platoon of inconsistent and erratic passers. LSU additionally misplaced whiz child offensive coordinator Joe Brady, who orchestrated probably the most environment friendly offenses in school soccer historical past earlier than becoming a member of the Carolina Panthers in the identical place this previous 12 months.

Marshall performed totally on the boundary (73.9% of 2019 snaps) throughout LSU’s championship run. Aligning in quite a lot of splits, he demonstrated explosive downfield velocity in his launch paired with sturdy deep ball monitoring and a substantial catch radius. He wins in contested conditions together with his top, 40-inch vertical and by adjusting to the ball on the catch level over defenders.

That was nearly all of Marshall’s workload in 2019. In 2020, Marshall kicked inside to switch Justin Jefferson. 76% of Marshall’s 2020 snaps got here from the slot, the place he demonstrated tempo variation and burst to separate over the center of the sector. Marshall additionally confirmed his dynamic velocity after the catch, the place he was not often tackled as soon as he discovered a seam and stepped on the accelerator.

Reflecting on Marshall’s previous two seasons, he’s proven that he can operate inside or exterior at a excessive stage. This could enable him to be comparatively scheme versatile, and a chess piece who may be moved across the discover the most effective matchup. In 2020, the previous Tiger additionally confirmed a knack for studying and discovering throwing home windows towards zone protection, which the Ravens see extra of than any workforce within the NFL on account of Lamar Jackson’s deadly mobility.

Marshall’s sport isn’t all rainbows and sunshine, nonetheless. Whereas “stiff” could also be too sturdy of a phrase to explain Marshall’s lateral breaks, his velocity cuts require rounding. He doesn’t fairly sink his hips out and in of breaks the best way elite route runners like Elijah Moore can, unable to flatten and work again to the ball with out losing movement.

Marshall depends extra on tempo variation to masks his shortcoming, the place he approaches his stem beneath management, then accelerates out of his break to create separation. Extra technically sound defensive backs within the NFL will be capable of disrupt Marshall’s stems as he can’t threaten sharp angles at full velocity constantly.

Moreover, experiences of medical issues on the NFL Mix have surfaced.

Marshall missed three video games in 2019, however returned to type and performed nicely in 2020 to comply with. Baltimore was unbothered by damage danger in 2019 once they made Marquise Brown the primary receiver off the board regardless of having two screws inserted into his foot forward of the draft.

One other space of concern is that merely put, Marshall drops passes. All receivers drop passes, however Marshall drops greater than you’d wish to see out of a first-round receiver. Professional Soccer Focus tagged Marshall with seven drops on 55 catchable passes in 2020. The drops appear to be of the basic “working earlier than the catch” selection.

Lastly, receivers aren’t drafted to dam, however in Baltimore’s offense, they must. Marshall, on his greatest days, is a median blocker. In area he constantly stops shifting his ft, permits his man a runway to realize momentum and provides up his chest. His effort and approach appeared miles higher in 2019, when LSU was a extra aggressive workforce total.

Unsurprisingly, the previous five-star recruit lit up LSU’s professional day, incomes the third highest Relative Athletic Rating within the 2021 receiver class behind solely Ja’Marr Chase and Jacob Harris.

Terrace Marshall Jr. RAS

Marshall stamped his top, explosiveness and velocity. His RAS does include an asterisk, as he didn’t check for agility, which leads me to consider that his lack of ability to sink his hips would’ve proven up within the 3-cone or brief shuttle. Marshall’s athletic testing profile is remarkably much like Jaguars receiver and one other former LSU Tiger, D.J. Chark.

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DJ Chark RAS

If Marshall can turn out to be remotely as profitable as Chark, the Ravens would hit a house run with this choose. Baltimore has lacked a dynamic receiver with a big catch radius because the Anquan Boldin days of previous. Whereas Marshall isn’t overly bodily, he possesses a big catch radius and constantly creates late separation by subtly pushing off. He would turn out to be maybe Baltimore’s greatest contested catch goal, as he introduced down 25 contested catches on 41 such targets over the previous two years in line with Professional Soccer Focus.

Drops and a scarcity of run blocking effort/means may develop irritating for the younger receiver, who remains to be solely 20 years previous. Because the Ravens have seen with Miles Boykin, when receivers are given a small goal share and wrestle to be efficient within the passing sport, issues can compound.

Marshall would carry a extra various ability set than Boykin, as he’s in a position to work within the slot and possesses considerably extra velocity after the catch. Boykin additionally solely has two extra years on his contract, which might make him dispensable if Marshall have been to return in and supply an improve.

Drafting Marshall would give the Ravens a full, various receiver room for the primary time in years. Marquise Brown, Sammy Watkins, Miles Boykin, Devin Duvernay and James Proche would enable for depth at each boundary positions in addition to the slot, whereas bringing very totally different physique varieties and ability units. Marshall additionally steps his sport up within the crimson zone, which might present a deadly pairing alongside Mark Andrews and Marquise Brown, who’ve each achieved appreciable injury in that space up to now of their respective careers.

Baltimore’s new large receivers coach and pass-game specialist, Tee Martin and Keith Williams, would definitely be ecstatic to see a specimen like Terrace Marshall Jr. in Baltimore. Whereas he does want sharpening in sure areas, Marshall possesses measurement, explosive motion expertise and a powerful manufacturing resume.

If Marshall is ready to handle his drops whereas persevering with to develop power in his 6’3, 205-pound body, he offers Lamar Jackson with a uncommon mixture of explosive velocity and juice after the catch. With virtually 33-inch arms, Marshall can reel in deep balls and proceed to hone in on his contested catch prowess. Yet one more crimson zone weapon, Marshall has potential to be extra of the “true No. 1” that Ravens followers have clamored for with only a smidge of improvement over the subsequent two years.

With solely two years remaining on Miles Boykin and Marquise Brown’s contracts, Marshall might turn out to be the featured piece in Yr 3, permitting the Ravens flexibility in free company/roster development down the street.

Prime prospects remaining:

  • Travis Etienne, RB, Clemson
  • Kadarius Toney, WR, Florida
  • Gregory Rousseau, EDGE, Miami
  • Greg Newsome Jr., CB, Northwestern
  • Nick Bolton, ILB, Missouri

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