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Trust This Ravens Receiving Corps

Ravens WR corps
Photo Credit: Baltimore Ravens
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Submitted by Brennan Stewart

In recent weeks, there has been a lot of attention surrounding free agency. Names like Jarvis Landry, Allen Robinson, and Julio Jones have appeared across Ravens fan pages and message boards more times than anyone can count.

But what if, and hear me out, the Ravens focused less on signing veteran wide receivers and focused more on developing the wide receivers they currently have?

Now that Hollywood Brown is in Arizona, there is finally room to breathe in the receiving corps. Last season, Brown was one of two receivers whose number of targets reached triple digits (the other was Mark Andrews). Looking at the team’s other wide receivers we see a significant drop off, with rookie Rashod Bateman getting the second highest volume at just 68 targets. With Hollywood no longer in the picture, this could be the year where we see Bateman prove his worth at WR1.

The “other wide receivers” mentioned before: Duvernay, Proche, and Wallace, all have something to prove as well. Last season they were cut short after 7-year veteran Sammy Watkins was added to the squad, who ended with the fourth-highest number of targets in the receiving corps.

Sure, Watkins may have had a decent production last season, but how can the Ravens’ current receiving corps develop on the field if the organization continues to bring in veterans hired guns? Now is the perfect opportunity for the club to trust in what they have. Not only will these receivers develop as players, but they will build the chemistry necessary for this team to reach the Super Bowl.

[Related Article: Bateman Ready to Step Up]

Now this may raise the question, do these receivers have what it takes to prevent the Ravens from turning towards free agency?

Although we have seen very little from our current receiving corps in the past two seasons, it is hard to ignore the success these players had in college. In his senior year at Oklahoma State, Tylan Wallace led the Big 12 in receptions per game (5.9) and receiving yards per game (92.2), as well as the most catches of at least ten yards (38). In 2019, Devin Duvernay led the Big 12 in several categories, including catches per game and receiving yards per game. He was also third in the Big 12 for receiving touchdowns (Wallace was fourth). James Proche kept pace with Justin Jefferson his senior year, tying for most receptions in the FBS (111).

Last but not least there’s Rashod Bateman. In 2019, Bateman crossed 1000 career receiving yards in only 13 games. That same year, he went on to finish with 1219 receiving yards and eleven touchdowns.

If the stats are not convincing enough, turn to the Ravens new coaching staff that was hired last February. First, there’s Pass Game Specialist Keith Williams, who personally coached several of the league’s star players including Tyreek Hill and Davante Adams. Tee Martin, who was hired as a Wide Receivers Coach, helped the USC Trojans win the Pac-12 Conference in 2017. As a college coach, Martin worked with several other notable players including JuJu Smith-Schuster and Robert Woods.

With a new coaching staff at their disposal, the young wide receivers on this team have the tools they need to become a solid unit. At the end of the day, their success will boil down to how much the coaching staff can trust in their abilities. As long as their chemistry continues to grow with Lamar, you can expect to see great things come out of the pass game this season.

I can’t help but feel excited, especially after watching Bateman’s latest interview with Marlon Humphrey on his new show, Studio 44.

“It’s my time. Baltimore drafted me for a reason. They drafted me to be in this position.”


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