Quarterback Lamar Jackson obtained the lion’s share of consideration, however the Ravens had been equally happy this week to see broad receivers Rashod Bateman and Devin Duvernay, each of whom suffered season-ending foot accidents in 2022, again on the sector for voluntary offseason exercises.
Bateman, a 2021 first-round choose, began final season because the crew’s No. 1 broad receiver however caught simply 15 passes in six video games earlier than he elected to have season-ending surgical procedure to restore a Lisfranc harm in early November.
Duvernay caught three landing passes within the first three video games final yr, however his manufacturing tailed off within the second half, and he broke his foot in December. He did make his second straight Pro Bowl as a kick returner.
Both had been restricted to particular person drills Wednesday.
“‘Duv’ has been out there working hard; he’s kind of building his stamina back up,” Ravens coach John Harbaugh mentioned. “‘Bate’s’ right on schedule with what they told us. He’s chomping at the bit. The trainers are holding him back a bit. We want to be cautious more than anything right now. He wants to be out there. I feel good about those guys.”
Both incumbents will face stiffer competitors for targets in new coordinator Todd Monken’s offense, with star free agent signing Odell Beckham Jr. and 2023 first-round choose Zay Flowers added to the Ravens’ broad receiver combine.
Several key veterans, together with Beckham, operating again J.Okay. Dobbins, tight finish Mark Andrews, proper guard Kevin Zeitler, left sort out Ronnie Stanley, fullback Patrick Ricard, linebacker Tyus Bowser, security Kyle Hamilton and cornerback Marlon Humphrey missed Wednesday’s voluntary exercise.
Harbaugh expressed little concern concerning the absences, saying he was pleased with the general attendance.
“I think about what OBJ’s doing out there in Arizona, I don’t have any problem with that,” he mentioned. “Or what Mark’s doing out there. They’ll be in here soon enough, whenever they’re ready. They talk to me and tell me what they’re doing. They’re working hard.”
Harbaugh mentioned Hamilton, the crew’s 2022 first-round choose, was lacking as a result of he “just kind of tightened up.” He joked that he had a spy monitoring Hamilton’s offseason exercises at Notre Dame. “He’ll be fine,” he mentioned.
Harbaugh added that reserve broad receiver Mike Thomas, who separated his shoulder and would possibly want labrum surgical procedure, is the one Raven at the moment going through a severe harm.
‘Common sense’ rule welcomed for third QBs
The Ravens favored a brand new league rule that may permit groups to have a 3rd quarterback accessible for video games with out utilizing a recreation day lively slot. Harbaugh mentioned the crew’s govt vp, Ozzie Newsome, proposed the same rule that may have gone into impact for the playoffs final yr.
“I think it’s good for the league,” Harbaugh mentioned. “You don’t want to be in a situation now, with the way protocols are going, where a team is deprived of a quarterback. I think it’s common sense. I applaud the league.”
Many have already dubbed it the “Brock Purdy” rule after the San Francisco 49ers performed a lot of final season’s NFC Championship recreation with out a wholesome quarterback. The Ravens signed 37-year-old veteran Josh Johnson, who entered in reduction of Purdy in that loss to the Philadelphia Eagles, on Monday to compete for his or her backup spot.
The Ravens had been much less enthusiastic a couple of new rule that may permit opponents to start out on the 25-yard line after kickoff returners make truthful catches exterior the tip zone.
“We weren’t for it; we voted against it,” Harbaugh mentioned. “We think it’s going to create more high-speed head trauma than not having it in there. That’s our position on it, but we’ll see. They want to give it a shot and take a look at it.”
The rule may additionally deprive the Ravens of a tactical weapon they’ve used to good impact in latest seasons, with Justin Tucker dropping kickoffs wanting the objective line and baiting opponents into brief returns.
DT Angelo Blackson signed
Harbaugh mentioned defensive sort out Angelo Blackson, signed Wednesday so as to add veteran depth to a place group that misplaced Calais Campbell, “can help us.”
Blackson, 30, performed in 15 video games and began 4 for the Chicago Bears final season, making 22 tackles.
“He’s a big, physical, hard-playing, tough, rugged defensive lineman,” Harbaugh mentioned. “Also a guy that really wanted to be here. He likes the way we play.”
Ravens linebacker Roquan Smith mentioned he developed nice respect for Blackson once they performed collectively in Chicago: “They guy like runs to the ball, plays hard, so I’m excited just to be back out here with him.”