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Instant analysis of Ravens' picking Hayden Hurst in 1st round

Instant analysis of Ravens' picking Hayden Hurst in 1st round”

The Baltimore Ravens have selected tight end Hayden Hurst out of the University of SC with their 25th-overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft.

The Ravens had their choice of best player available at pick No. 16 and traded back. With quarterback Joe Flacco often using tight ends as a security blanket or outlet valve of sorts, finding a good one was crucial if Baltimore was going to do it at all.

Hurst will not be your typical rookie in the NFL. Hurst has incredibly soft hands and makes a lot of contested catches.

Hurst comes with an interesting story. Now that the Baltimore Ravens have added wide receivers like Michael Crabtree, Willie Snead, and John Brown, Hurst completes the passing game and gives the team a well-rounded aerial attack. The Pittsburgh Pirates selected him in the 2012 Major League Baseball draft and he spent two years as a pitcher in the Gulf Coast League.

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This is a solid pick for the Baltimore Ravens, who are in need of a tight end after losing Dennis Pitta to retirement following a number of injuries that derailed his career and Benjamin Watson to free agency. He was an immediate starter despite the transition.

Its obvious fans would have wanted a freakishly athletic tight end like Mike Gesicki or Dallas Goedert but the Ravens went with the three-down tight end in Hurst.

Hurst had plenty of respect in the USC locker room as he was named a permanent team captain for his final two seasons. His late arrival to football means he'll turn 25 years old before this season begins.

This pick fills a huge need for the Ravens. At pick No. 25 Ozzie Newsome had the opportunity to draft a beloved Alabama wide receiver in Calvin Ridley and took Hurst instead.

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