Ravens Safety Named NFL’s Top Undrafted Free Agent for 2021

Ar'Darius Washington

Getty Ar'Darius Washington makes a tackle at the goal line.

The Baltimore Ravens have what experts see as one of the better NFL Drafts of the 2021 year, and they added plenty of help afterward as well.

Typically one of the more active teams in undrafted free agency, the Ravens struck to add one of the best players of the period in safety Ar’Darius Washington out of TCU. Most believed Washington was one of the better players left on the board, but he wasn’t picked.

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The Ravens managed to be the ones to scoop Washington up for their defense, and as a result, scored a huge win in the mind of Pro Football Focus. Writer Zach Tantillo picked out Washington as the top overall undrafted free agent rookie signing in the NFL this year.

He wrote:

“Ranked as the No. 57 overall prospect on PFF’s 2021 NFL Draft Big Board, Washington was the top player remaining when the seventh round concluded Saturday evening.

At 5-foot-8, 178 pounds, Washington is undersized for a safety, but that has yet to stop him from wreaking havoc in the secondary. He was PFF’s second-highest-graded safety in 2019 (91.7), with Mike Renner comping him to Super Bowl champion Tyrann Mathieu in PFF’s 2021 NFL Draft Guide.

Baltimore wasted no time signing the TCU product, adding him to an already elite Ravens secondary. His versatility should be a fine addition to Baltimore’s defense, as Washington played 100-plus snaps covering deep, in the box and the slot in both the 2019 and 2020 seasons.”

Washington had a very productive career at TCU, putting up 86 tackles and 5 interceptions. He’s shown some raw talent at times, so it’s nice for the Ravens to be able to add such a player to their roster that they can develop for the future. He might prove to be a steal in the end.

Ravens Defense Boosted Secondary

Baltimore’s secondary is mostly solid, but the team is always very savvy with additions, and by adding names like Shaun Wade and Washington, the team may have scored again in a big way. Wade is coming into the NFL much-maligned given his struggles with Ohio State, and Washington will be the same way given the major fall he had in the draft. That won’t matter to Wink Martindale and the Ravens, though, who routinely make a habit out of developing elite defensive back talents in the later rounds.

With a couple motivated, talented players coming into the fold again, it’s clear that the Ravens are setting out to once again provide their group a major boost.

Ravens 2021 NFL Draft Recap

Washington was far from the only score the Ravens had over the weekend. From the start of the first round until the fifth, the Ravens did some nice work, filling out plenty of their needs in a confident way. Wideout Rashod Bateman and defensive end Odafe Oweh were the team’s first selections. In round three, the team took guard Ben Cleveland and cornerback Brandon Stephens. Round four brought a potential steal in wideout Tylan Wallace. The fifth-round brought cornerback Shaun Wade and defensive end Daelin Hayes as well as fullback Ben Mason.

Overall, it was a well-balanced class for the Ravens, who did well to add the players they did both in free agency and during the draft. Perhaps the best addition could prove to be Washington.

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