Ozzie Newsome and the Ravens organization are constantly on the lookout for players to improve their roster, especially at an area of weakness. This year, the positions with questions include returner, with the fragile Michael Campanaro currently slated to handle both kick returns and punt returns, as well as serving as the primary slot receiver. While he has shown ability at all three of those roles, the biggest issue for him has been health. An injury to him would leave the team in a lurch for both return roles, since the other options on the roster are key players like Steve Smith Sr. and Lardarius Webb.
With that in mind, Ravens fans have been monitoring the cuts in order to see who the team could bring in to upgrade the position. The player who stuck out to me as a great candidate is former Lions wide receiver Jeremy Ross. He was edged out at the position for the Lions, with incoming rookie running back Ameer Abdullah able to handle the return duties.
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Jeremy Ross is the only WR I'd like off waiver wire. 6' 210 with 4.39 40 coming out of Cal. Returner with explosive skills. That's my target</p>— No More Leaks (@SportsGuy_83) <a href="https://twitter.com/SportsGuy_83/status/640340258131804160">September 6, 2015</a></blockquote>
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Ross is coming off a season where he was dynamic as a returner, averaging 25.8 yards on kick returns and 8.9 yards on punt returns. He ended the season with 23 kick returns for 584 yards and 32 punt returns for 284 yards. Ross also had 24 receptions for 314 yards and a touchdown, with 15 of those catches going for first downs.
In 2013, Ross had kick and punt returns for touchdowns in the same game against the Eagles. For his 4 year career, he has totaled 47 kick returns for 1,184 yards (25.2 yards per) and 53 punt returns for 650 yards (12.2 yards per), and the 2 aforementioned touchdowns. He did have 3 fumbles last year, although he only has 5 for his career.
For his full career stats, click here.
Ross went undrafted in the 2011 draft, and bounced around, spending time on practice squads in New England, Indianapolis, and Green Bay before being given a shot with the Lions last season.
The biggest issue for the Ravens would be carrying 7 wide receivers, but Ross also has experience on the coverage units of special teams, so he could be an asset in several roles for the Ravens.