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‘His style of play really fits us’ – The Mercury News



The Ravens addressed an instantaneous want within the third spherical of the NFL draft, selecting Connecticut defensive deal with Travis Jones, a strong inside presence thought to be a second-round expertise by many analysts.

The 6-foot-4, 325-pound Jones delivered 47 tackles and 4 ½ sacks, spectacular numbers for an inside lineman, in 2021. According to Sports Info Solutions, he additionally led all nostril deal with prospects in stress price. The No. 76 total choose didn’t play the earlier season due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“The emotion was crazy,” Jones mentioned on a Zoom name shortly after the Ravens picked him. “I’m just happy I got picked up by the right team and the right fit.”

ESPN analyst Mel Kiper referred to Jones “as a potential monster inside” with first-round expertise. Pro Football Focus mentioned he’s “not much of a playmaker or finisher in [the] run game” however that he “rag-dolled linemen left and right.” He improved his draft inventory with a standout efficiency on the Senior Bowl and eye-popping take a look at numbers on the NFL scouting mix.

Though Pro Football Focus referred to him as “a quintessential block of granite at nose tackle,” he ran the 40-yard sprint in 4.92 seconds and accomplished his cone drill in 7.33 seconds, distinctive marks for a defender his dimension.

Ravens basic supervisor Eric DeCosta mentioned Jones jumped out to him on the Senior Bowl. “I noticed he was powerfully built, and he was unblockable that week in Mobile,” he mentioned. “His style of play really fits us.”

He mentioned Ravens line of defense coach Anthony Weaver advocated for Jones, seeing uncommon potential in his huge body.

“He’s going to hearken back to some of the guys we’ve had in here,” DeCosta mentioned. “He’s got unusual quickness for his size.”

The 22-year-old Connecticut native performed offensive guard in highschool however switched to protection at his home-state college, the place he performed for former Maryland coach Randy Edsall.

He mentioned he confirmed up weighing 360 kilos however dropped 30 kilos by his sophomore yr, sculpting his physique by way of devoted weight lifting.

“You talk about a guy that’s transformed his body,” Edsall informed the Hartford Courant earlier than final season. “He has worked his tail off. He really looks good.”

Ravens director of participant personnel Joe Hortiz mentioned he watched Jones enhance all through 2021. “When you watched him, you watched him progress as the season went on,” he mentioned. “His technique improved. His stamina improved.”

In addition to Jones’ energy, scouts praised his lengthy arms and highly effective arms. Jones mentioned he considers himself a run stuffer who can even collapse the pocket.

He admires Ravens defensive finish Calais Campbell, one other long-armed lineman who manhandles blockers. Jones will deliver contemporary legs to a line that features veterans Campbell, Derek Wolfe and Michael Pierce together with third-year defensive tackles Justin Madubuike and Broderick Washington.

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