Ravens' draft primer: Jimmy Garoppolo

With 20 days until the NFL draft begins, here is another potential draft prospect for the Baltimore Ravens:


Position: Quarterback

School: Eastern Illinois

Height/weight: 6-foot-2, 226

Round projection: Second

File this away: Garoppolo broke all of Tony Romo's career passing records at Eastern Illinois.

Good: Garoppolo is as confident as any of this year's quarterback prospects who came from bigger programs. His game is based on timing and smarts. When watching him on tape, his quick release stands out the most. Garoppolo has good vision and anticipation, which leads to fast decisions. He has enough athleticism to escape the pocket and buy more time. ESPN's Bill Polian predicts Garoppolo will be a first-round pick.

Bad: He doesn't have an elite arm, which shows up in a lack of velocity on certain throws. Garoppolo's height and body size are good, but not ideal, for an NFL quarterback. His gunslinger mentality shows up when he forces passes in tight windows. Garoppolo needs to protect the ball better. He had the second highest fumble percentage of top quarterback prospects in the 2014 class, according to ESPN Stats & Information.

Bottom line: There's a good chance the Ravens take a quarterback at some point in the draft. They have been a little disappointed with backup Tyrod Taylor's play in games, and they have to look to the future because Taylor is in the final year of his deal. By bringing Garoppolo in for a pre-draft visit, the Ravens obviously have some level of interest in him. That said, the only way the Ravens get Garoppolo is if he somehow falls into the fourth round, which appears very unlikely. Joe Flacco has never missed a game in his six-year NFL career, so using a Day 2 pick (second and third round) on a backup quarterback doesn't make sense when there are more pressing needs.

What Garoppolo said: "The exposure really helps a small school guy like me. It's tough for us to get our names out there. We're not always on ESPN and on TV, so every little bit of exposure like that helps get my name out there. Playing well in both the games (East-West Shrine Game and Senior Bowl) really helped me and mentally helped me, too."