253 draft picks have transformed the NFL in a matter of days. Around the League will examine the aftershocks by asking one post-draft burning question for all 32 teams.
On Thursday we asked if the Cincinnati Bengals pulled off the AFC North's top draft. Don't read that as a knock on the Baltimore Ravens (or the Pittsburgh Steelers for that matter). If anything, Cincinnati departed from a string of frustrating drafts to solid hauls over the past two years by following the blueprint drawn by Ozzie Newsome & Co.
The general manager of the Ravens earned praise this time around for patiently waiting on players to fall to Baltimore without reaching for need.
The front office might also have a psychic on the payroll, because the Courtney Upshaw selection -- with what we know today -- might have saved this team a serious headache after Terrell Suggs tore his Achilles' tendon, placing his 2012 season in peril. There's no replacing Suggs, but Upshaw is a gritty defender who gives the Ravens a potentially dangerous edge rusher.
The Ravens are so consistent on defense. The personnel and leadership has been in place for years, which will only help Upshaw develop more rapidly. The rookie is striving to become a versatile, everything-man like Suggs.
"I honestly feel I can be, but Terrell Suggs is Terrell Suggs, no other," Upshaw told The Baltimore Sun. "I am just trying to come in and learn from him. I am sure he can help me out, become a better football player overall. The things he does and the position I am asked to play here, I want to come in and learn from the best, and Terrell Suggs is one of the best."
It's not a perfect solution (with Upshaw we're theorizing about his potential) but it's less expensive than making a move for someone like Osi Umenyiora. Newsome isn't about to ship a high draft pick to the New York Giants, that isn't the blueprint here. This team plans ahead with the best of him. They have their man.