Ozzie Newsome sent waves throughout the NFL with the final first-round pick of his legendary career as Baltimore's general manager.
The Ravens traded up with the Eagles to select Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson with the No. 32 overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft. For the first time since 1999, five quarterbacks were selected in the draft's first round. In order to move up, the Ravens sent their 52nd, 125th picks and a 2019 second-round selection to Philadelphia in exchange for the 32nd and 132nd selections this year.
Ranked No. 39 overall on NFL Network analyst Daniel Jeremiah's list of the draft's top 50 prospects, Jackson has been the most dynamic playmaker in college football for the past two seasons, collecting the Heisman Trophy in 2016.
Michael Vick, the first overall pick in 2001 and the most explosive running quarterback of all time, told the Move the Sticks Podcast that Jackson is his "spitting image." Trent Dilfer, one of the most respected quarterback analysts in the business, insists Jackson is "light years" ahead of Vick entering the NFL.
Recent rookie success stories such as Robert Griffin III, Russell Wilson and Deshaun Watson suggest Jackson has a chance to take the league by storm if he can unseat a declining Joe Flacco. It's worth noting that Ravens offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg was running the Eagles' offense when Vick posted a career year in 2010.
While Jackson does possess plenty of arm strength and a quick release, scouts and executives are divided on his pro potential. Although he does tend to stay in the pocket and see the play through before scrambling, some question whether he's more than a one-read passer with accuracy issues. There are also concerns about his ability to withstand NFL physicality as a runner.
"He's an awesome athlete. He will not be able to play [quarterback] in this league, mark my words," one offensive coordinator opined to NFL Network's Tom Pelissero. "When he throws, he hopes."
That coach is not on an island. Former Colts President Bill Polian believes wide receiver is Jackson's optimal NFL position.