The Baltimore Ravens added two potential cornerstones in the first round of the 2022 NFL Draft. They used the 14th overall pick on Notre Dame safety Kyle Hamilton, the player that many have called the best in the draft. Then, they traded for the 25th overall pick and selected Iowa center Tyler Linderbaum, one of the very best centers in the draft, to protect Lamar Jackson.
The Ravens’ star quarterback had some influence in the selection of the big man from Iowa. General manager Eric DeCosta told Ryan Mink of BaltimoreRavens.com that Jackson is the one who presses for upgrades on the offensive line, which should make him a huge fan of the Linderbaum selection.
“I’ve had conversations with Lamar many times and I’ve said, ‘Lamar, what can we do to help you? What is most important to you?'” DeCosta said. “Honestly, the thing that he always comes back to is the offensive line.”
As electrifying as Jackson is when plays break down, even he knows a good offensive line is paramount. Although the Ravens had to part ways with wide receiver Marquise Brown in order to get into a position to pick Linderbaum — a move that left Jackson stunned — finding the potential keystone of the offensive line was worth it.
Baltimore had a fantastic draft overall and Linderbaum is a big reason why. As they look to get back to the playoffs in an increasingly difficult AFC North, they loaded up on talent in the draft and will get a healthy Jackson back to start next season.