- After a solid performance in the NFL Draft, the Baltimore Ravens are the second betting choice to win Super Bowl 55 at +700
- How did other top Super Bowl contenders fare on draft day?
- Examination of the odds and winners and losers are featured in the story that follows
The 14-2 Baltimore Ravens were the NFL’s best regular-season team in 2019. Many experts also assess the Ravens to be the team with the best performance during the 2020 NFL Draft.
A solid top-to-bottom effort in the selection process through three days of drafting has also left the Ravens as solid contenders to win Super Bowl 55.
The Ravens are listed at +700 in the Super Bowl odds. Only the defending Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs (+600) currently show shorter odds.
Super Bowl 55 Odds
|Kansas City Chiefs||+600|
|San Francisco 49ers||+900|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||+1100|
|New Orleans Saints||+1200|
|New England Patriots||+2000|
|Green Bay Packers||+2500|
|Los Angeles Rams||+3300|
|Los Angeles Chargers||+4000|
|Las Vegas Raiders||+6000|
|New York Giants||+6600|
|New York Jets||+6600|
Odds taken April 26th.
Which other NFL contenders helped themselves through the draft process? Let’s look at analysis of the some of the key players in the draft.
Raving About the Ravens
A significant area in need of upgrading for Baltimore was at linebacker. The Ravens didn’t waste any time in addressing it.
LSU linebacker Patrick Queen was rated a top-15 pick by most NFL scouts. The Ravens got him 28th overall. He’s a protoype for the type of LB who works best in the Baltimore system – fast and physical.
Patrick Queen was meant to be a Raven. Loved watching his tape. Gonna be a great backer.
— Tedy Bruschi (@TedyBruschi) April 24, 2020
Ohio State ILB Malik Harrison might not have the physical tools to be an every-down performer but is quick and a punishing hitter who should contribute as a role player.
Harrison’s teammate, Buckeyes running back JK Dobbins, was also expected to be a first rounder. Baltimore got him at #55. Last season, he rambled for 2,250 yards from scrimmage and 23 touchdowns.
Chiefs Fill Need
Patrick Mahomes told the Chiefs he wanted a running back to bolster their offence. The Kansas City brass listened to their MVP and Super Bowl-winning QB and selected Clyde Edwards-Helaire in the first round.
One coach told me new #Chiefs RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire was the best player he saw on tape in this draft:
"He's such a playmaker. He’s a good ball-carrier, but his value in the pass game is pretty substantial. He never gets tackled by the first guy."
Another toy for Andy Reid.
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) April 24, 2020
The LSU back ran for 1,414 yards and an SEC-best 16 touchdowns in 2019. He averaged 6.6 yards per carry.
Mississippi State’s Willie Gay Jr should help at linebacker but KC did little early in the draft to upgrade in the secondary.
Gronk Launches Big Week
After luring tight end Rob Gronkowski out of retirement to reunite with Tom Brady, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were already having a good week. After the draft, it got even better.
Brady’s new guy:
– 4.85 40-yard dash: Fastest among all OL this year
– 36.5" vertical jump: OL record (since '03)
– 10'1" broad jump: OL record (T-1 since '03).
320-pound Tristan Wirfs is a FREAK!pic.twitter.com/esSiB0zswN
— The Big Guy (@WeAreBigGuys) April 24, 2020
Iowa’s Tristan Wirfs gives them a right tackle to protect Brady. Vanderbilt’s Ke’Shawn Vaughn offers Brady the versatile type of back he loved to utilize in New England. Vaughn is a dynamic runner who can also catch passes out of the backfield.
The oddsmakers took notice. Tampa Bay’s Super Bowl line shortened from +1500 to +1100.
Niners Got Finer
On the surface, the betting line on the reigning NFC champion San Francisco 49ers remains unchanged at +900. But no one is doubting that San Fran is a better team today.
Javon Kinlaw has had a journey:
• parents immigrated to U.S. from Trinidad
• had stints of homelessness
• moved in with his father
• bounced between motels & friends’ houses
• earned scholarship to S. Carolina
• 14th pick in Draft pic.twitter.com/tGUwIeHO67
— CBS Sports (@CBSSports) April 24, 2020
In South Carolina defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw and Arizona State wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk, they found instant replacements for the departed DeForest Buckner and Emmanuel Sanders.
On top of that, they made the bold move to acquire tackle Trent Williams from the Washington Redskins to replace the retiring Joe Staley.
Saints Add Vital Pieces
New Orleans first-round pick Cesar Ruiz of Michigan can play center or guard. He’s viewed as the best interior lineman in this draft class.
Saints got a top 25 player in the class at Zack Baun. Rush ability on long/late downs and coverage help at LB. They are SO loaded
— Jon Ledyard (@LedyardNFLDraft) April 25, 2020
Wisconsin linebacker Zack Baun may turn out to be the steal of this draft in the third round at pick #74. Baun can drop into coverage and also rush the passer. He was viewed by some as first-round material.
Packing It In
All the Green Bay Packers managed to do with their first-round pick was anger their best player. Not very well-played strategy by the Pack.
— Rich Eisen (@richeisen) April 25, 2020
Selecting Utah quarterback Jordan Love raised the ire of Green Bay’s All-Pro QB Aaron Rodgers.
After reaching the NFC Championship Game last season, the Packers didn’t add a single player who figures to be a major contributor to the team’s cause in 2020.
Eagles Land With a Thud
The defending NFC East champion Eagles watched the Dallas Cowboys load up on draft day while they fiddled.
Many scouts viewed LSU’s Justin Jefferson and Clemson’s Tee Higgins as better options at WR than TCU’s Jalen Reagor.
And you thought you were upset about the Jalen Reagor pick …
— Jeff McLane (@Jeff_McLane) April 25, 2020
Philly’s second-round pick of Oklahoma QB Jalen Hurts was equally puzzling, considering Eagles QB Carson Wentz isn’t even entering his prime years under center.