Now that the draft is over and camps have begun, we can now begin to analyze and break down our expectations for this exciting group of players. The biggest overhaul on the team comes at receiving weapons, where we surprisingly spent our top 2 picks to give Flacco better options. I know many of us are excited to see Crockett Gillmore, Kamar Aiken, Marlon Brown, and Michael Campanaro take the next step. But our newest 1st round pick has a higher ceiling than any of those players. Joe Flacco has shown the ability to elevate his rookie receivers, will Breshad be the next in line?
The Ravens do not need him to be more than a field stretcher as a rookie, so anything more will be a bonus. Torrey Smith was a great field stretcher as a rookie in 2011, posting 50 receptions, 767 yards and 7 touchdowns on 95 targets as the #2 receiver on a division winner that lost in the conference finals in the infamous Evans/Cundiff game. If Breshad can provide a similar effect, that would be ideal.
Another Ravens rookie who produced was Marlon Brown. An undrafted rookie coming out of Georgia, Brown was coming off a ACL injury and still not 100%. But he managed to impress in preseason, and he got his chance when Jacoby Jones was injured on a return in the season opener. More of a short yardage possession type receiver, he tied Torrey for the team rookie record with 7 touchdowns, although he only had 49 receptions and 524 yards on 82 targets.
Other Ravens rookies have been less impressive over the years, but only 3 of them have had more than 30 targets:
- Travis Taylor: 28 receptions, 276 yards, 3 touchdowns on 54 targets
- Mark Clayton: 44 receptions, 471 yards, 2 touchdowns on 87 targets
- Demetrius Williams: 22 receptions, 396 yards, 2 touchdowns on 45 targets