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NFL Mock Draft 2012: Arizona State LB Vontaze Burfict Could Go To Ravens In First Round

The 2012 NFL Draft is fast approaching and the front offices are making their plans. The mock drafts by columnists and sportswriters are beginning to take shape and some Arizona St. Sun Devils players are popping up on many of them. One of the players drawing attention is Sun Devils linebacker Vontaze Burfict.

Mock draft website Drafttek predicts that Burfict might be the No. 27 overall draft pick, which would send him to the Baltimore Ravens as their first round selection. Here is what Drafttek has to say:

Baltimore is a team that rarely has any glaring needs and this year is no different. Ray Lewis missed four games this season due to injury and had his lowest snap total in seven years. His backup, Brendon Ayanbadejo, is a career special teams ace that doesn't offer much on defense. Lewis is 36 so it may be wise to investigate a long-term replacement. Vontaze Burfict is a big, strong, athletic, violent player that projects best to play an attacking scheme like the one the Ravens use. Burfict's athletic ability should have him in the top five but he tends to play too out of control, constantly getting unnecessary roughness penalties. In fact, he was benched at multiple times this season, including the bowl game due to his reckless play. Baltimore is a perfect place for him though as he would be able to sit and learn from arguably the best ILB ever and is a player that was once known for having similar tendencies.

The Ravens were a solid team in 2011 and as always, were built around their punishing defense. That defense is finally beginning to show signs of age, however. The Ravens know that they'll need to start shoring up the next generation of Baltimore defenders. Burfict would be a good fit in that respect.

For all news and information regarding the Sun Devils, please visit House of Sparky. For perspective on the Baltimore Ravens, head on over to Baltimore Beat Down.

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