With the 62nd and final pick in Pride Of Detroit's 2013 NFL mock draft, the Baltimore Ravens select Tennessee Tech wide receiver Da'Rick Rogers. Lions_sucker is serving as the Ravens' general manager, and his reasoning for the pick is below.
Continuing with the theme of my previous pick of D.J. Fluker, my focus is surrounding Joe Flacco with talent. Besides WR, I looked at DB and ILB here, but with D.J. Swearinger and Kevin Minter just getting picked, the next player on my board was Da'Rick Rogers.
After losing Anquan Boldin, it was crucial that I get a physical receiver with great hands, and Da'Rick Rogers fills that need and then some. A very similar receiver to Dez Bryant, Rogers is able to make difficult catches in traffic and on the sideline that allow drives to continue. He also shines in creating space between himself and defenders, as he has strong route-running ability. Rogers' athleticism really shows after the catch, though, as he routinely made defenders miss tackles and extended plays with his agility and strength. Utilizing all of this talent led to Rogers being the leading receiver in the SEC during his sophomore year in 2011 against the best defenses in college football.
While Rogers is a tremendously gifted player on the field, it has been his off-the-field actions that allowed him to slip this far and make this a tough pick. After failing three drug tests during his time at Tennessee, Rogers was indefinitely suspended and had to play the 2012 season at Tennessee Tech. While this is a major red flag, all reports indicate that Rogers turned a corner during his time as a Golden Eagle. The Ravens have traditionally accepted players with troubled pasts (i.e. Jimmy Smith, Sergio Kindle) into their organization. If not for the failed drug tests, I would argue that Rogers could have been in discussion as the top receiver of this class. He could work on minimizing the use of his body to catch the ball, but with coaching this habit could disappear. He is a player worth taking a chance on at the end of the second round.
After a season against lesser opponents while at Tennessee Tech, there were concerns regarding a potential drop-off in Rogers' ability. These concerns were quickly dismissed at the NFL Combine with Rogers ranking in the top five in the three-cone drill and both the 20-yard and 60-yard shuttles. He also ran a respectable 4.52 40-yard dash, and the 6'2", 217-pound receiver showed that he had not lost any athleticism.
If Rogers can successfully transition into the NFL and stay out of trouble, he will make the Ravens quickly forget about losing a great player like Boldin. Across from Torrey Smith, Rogers will have the ability to sustain drives and make tough catches in traffic and possibly supplant Smith as Flacco's top option.
Check out the 2013 Pride Of Detroit Community Mock Draft tracker for a look at all of the picks.