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Ravens News 4/3: Contingency Plans and more

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NCAA Football: Florida at Miami Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Greg Roman plans to spend 2023 out of NFL, reflects on success with Lamar Jackson - Nick Shook

“Jackson was such a master of avoiding hits, and honestly, he was safest when he was out in space on the move because he was in control as opposed to in the pocket with his eyes downfield, hoping somebody doesn’t run into the back of his legs,” Roman explained. “The few times he got injured were behind the line of scrimmage, looking to make a throw down the field.”

“If you have a quarterback with certain skills, you’ve got to tap into their strengths, and you’ve got to mine for gold there and have convictions,” Roman wrote. “When you’re doing something different, half the fans aren’t even going to understand it because that’s not what they’re used to. You know that going in, but you’ve got to have the strength of conviction and courage to forge ahead with it.

“The elite pocket passer will always be valued. At some point, you’ve got to stand in the pocket, throw the ball and deliver it to win consistently. How much you have to do that will change, but there’s no doubt the opportunity exists for mobile quarterbacks because NFL decision-makers have seen it work.”

Favorite, least favorite free agency moves for all 32 NFL teams - Brad Spielberger


Favorite: N/A

This isn’t an attempt to take a shot at the Ravens, as sitting out free agency is often a good thing, but they really didn’t do much of note.

Least favorite: Releasing Calais Campbell

Baltimore has a lot of big contracts on its roster, and Campbell is obviously getting up there in age, but it’s never easy to part ways with a locker-room leader and a consistently productive player along the defensive line. Campbell earned grades above 70.0 in both run defense and as a pass rusher, but Baltimore did get out ahead of this move by adding Michael Pierce, Brent Urban and Travis Jones last offseason.

Wise to Work on Contingency Plans While Hoping for the Best - Ryan Mink

Every new development in the Lamar Jackson situation seems to bring no real change. The draft is the next possible inflection point, as teams will either get their quarterback of the future or not. That’s when clubs make their moves, while this is a time when they mask their intentions.

While the hope is to work out a deal with Jackson eventually, the Ravens must, and do, have contingency plans. We’re seeing some clues about what those are. Baltimore’s needs, salary-cap space, and potential draft pick ammunition are all up in the air pending the possibility of a trade.

The Ravens’ veteran free-agent quarterback options have dwindled. Carson Wentz? Teddy Bridgewater? Maybe somebody shakes loose after the draft, or there’s always the option of making a trade. It’s not an ideal scenario to be in with the possibility of Jackson sitting out for who knows how long.

Baltimore’s reported meeting with Odell Beckham and reported remaining interest in DeAndre Hopkins and Courtland Sutton proves they could still reel in a big wide receiver fish. Adding any of them would be tough under the current salary-cap restraints, but it seems Baltimore is keeping tabs in case that changes.

To NFL draft analyst Mel Kiper Jr., Ravens can fill their needs with just five picks - Mike Preston

“They should have beaten, could have beaten, Cincinnati easily with a beat-up, banged-up Tyler Huntley and no Lamar Jackson,” Kiper said of the Ravens’ quarterback situation in a 24-17 loss in the AFC wild-card round. “Physically, I thought they had them beaten had they not had the freakish play [Huntley’s goal-line fumble returned 98 yards for a touchdown] which resulted in the 14-point swing.”

When it comes to the draft, the positions the Ravens need to target are obvious to the Calvert Hall graduate, who has been covering the annual event for ESPN since 1984.

“The bottom line is they need one or two corners, they need one or two receivers and I think a defensive lineman,” Kiper said.

“Now, if Jalyn Armour-Davis can start to stay healthy and develop, maybe they got something there,” Kiper of last year’s fourth-round pick out of Alabama. “We’ll see. The Ravens need corners, so this is a really good year for them to find some.”

2023 NFL Three-Round Mock Draft: Ravens take QB after trading Lamar Jackson, Vikings move up for QB in Round 2 - Josh Edwards

Round 1 - Pick 4

QB Anthony Richardson

FLORIDA • SOPH • 6’4” / 244 LBS

Trade! Baltimore sends quarterback Lamar Jackson to Indianapolis in exchange for a package that includes the No. 4 overall selection. With the selection, the Ravens select their replacement for Jackson in Anthony Richardson.

Round 1 - Pick 22

WR Quentin Johnston

TCU • JR • 6’3” / 208 LBS

Baltimore gets a big, vertical outlet for rookie quarterback Anthony Richardson, who the Ravens drafted with the fourth overall pick received from the Colts in the Lamar Jackson trade. Quentin Johnston is unordinary for a bigger wide receiver because of his ability to make plays post-catch.

86. Ravens - DeWayne McBride, RB, UAB