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2 Ravens among ESPN’s top 50 free agents

A certain quarterback may be No. 1...

Pittsburgh Steelers v Baltimore Ravens Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

With only the Super Bowl between the Philadelphia Eagles and Kansas City Chiefs left to cap off the 2022 NFL season, the primary focus will soon turn toward free agency. Some of the attention has already shifted, with ESPN’s Matt Bowen releasing his top 50 list of upcoming free agents, with a certain Baltimore Raven topping it off.

In no surprise, quarterback Lamar Jackson came in at No. 1 on the list of scheduled free agents.

“Jackson is the league’s most electric player, with an upper-tier skill set that creates major issues for opposing defenses,” Bowen wrote. “Before a knee injury that sidelined him for the final six games of the season, he had 2,242 passing yards — with 17 touchdowns — and 764 rushing yards with three more scores. He’s still young and can keep improving. With the positional value to demand a multiyear contract, Jackson is clearly the top player on the board. The Ravens have said they want to bring him back, and they could use the franchise tag next month.”

The predominant storyline surrounding the Ravens for the past year has been the ongoing contract negotiations between Baltimore and the former unanimous MVP. Jackson will not hit the open market as a free agent this offseason, as the two sides will either reach an agreement on a new contract, Jackson will play the season on the franchise tag, or the Ravens will tag and trade their star quarterback for a substantial haul.

Guard Ben Powers came in at No. 39 on the list.

“A road grader in the run game, the 310-pound Powers plays his best football in close quarters, where he can use his power at the point of attack,” Bowen wrote.” He was the league’s second-best guard in run block win rate (78.8%) this season. He can get stressed on his edge as space expands, but he did have a pass block win rate of 93.2%, which ranked 10th among all guards. He could be a nice pickup on the market.”

Powers improved drastically in the final year of his rookie deal. The former fourth-rounder out of Oklahoma is set to receive a nice payday this offseason which could price him out of Baltimore. The Ravens should be in line to receive a compensatory pick if Powers does sign such a contract with another team.