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Ravens News 6/12: Rising Stock and more

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2023 NFL Pro Bowl Games Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images

‘You become the coordinator’: Ravens giving Lamar Jackson more freedom to audible

Jamison Hensley, ESPN

In four seasons with offensive coordinator Greg Roman, Baltimore primarily huddled up and ran the play that was called. Under Monken, Jackson can slide the pass protection to one side if he sees a defender blitzing or switch a receiver’s route if the cornerback lines up a certain way.

“Coach [Monken] is basically just giving us the keys to the offense, really,” Jackson said. “I’m loving it.”

In his four full seasons as a starting quarterback, Jackson totaled 32 no-huddle plays, which ranked 32nd in the NFL over that span. He had success, completing 70.5% of his throws (55-of-78) when not huddling.

“There are times where Coach ‘Monk’ says, ‘I’m the coordinator. I call the plays. You like [the play]? Keep it,’” Martin said. “When you change that play, you become the coordinator. And we want it to work.

“He’s doing a good job and getting us in the right plays and operating the offense.”

The Ravens are trying to get Jackson and their offense back on track. In Jackson’s 2019 NFL MVP season, Baltimore ranked first in points scored (33.19) and second in total yards (407.6). Last season, the Ravens were 12th in scoring (23.7) and 14th in yards gained (350.2) before Jackson missed the final five games with a sprained left knee.

Ravens film study: What’s next in the evolution of safety Kyle Hamilton?

Jonas Shaffer, The Baltimore Banner

If it was tempting to see Hamilton as the Ravens’ long-term answer in the slot, the notion did not survive for long. At the NFL scouting combine in March, Harbaugh said he envisioned Hamilton primarily as a safety. Two weeks later, the Ravens traded Chuck Clark to the New York Jets, clearing a path for Hamilton to pair with Marcus Williams in 2023.

“It’s June 6, so we’re still getting the kinks out at this point,” Hamilton said Tuesday. “But as of right now, I’ve been getting a lot of reps at safety. I didn’t get a ton of reps at safety last year, just in terms of the room that we had and the positions I was playing, what positions I was put in. But yes, there’s still a lot to learn, for me, back there at that position at this level, given the lack of experience I had last year. But like I said, I’m learning new stuff every day, making new mistakes and getting more comfortable day by day.”

The Ravens rarely played man coverage in their first year under defensive coordinator Mike Macdonald. When they did, Hamilton was a better match athletically against tight ends. According to Sports Info Solutions, he got just four snaps in man-to-man against a wide receiver last season — and allowed three completions on three targets for 45 yards.

Ranking the NFL’s top 10 cornerbacks in passer rating allowed: Eagles’ James Bradberry and Panthers’ Jaycee Horn make the list

Braxton Howard, PFF


NFL passer rating allowed: 74.5

Humphrey is one of the five qualified cornerbacks who did not allow a single touchdown in coverage last season. He had been playing from the slot at times, but last season he saw 823 snaps out wide. He earned the lowest coverage grade of his career in 2021 (65.0) but responded accordingly last season with a 75.6 mark.

Humphrey excels in man coverage, as his 90.2 coverage grade in man led the league among all qualified cornerbacks. He also let up only 10 catches on 19 targets from man. His ability to jam receivers in a press look is second to none.

50 Words or Less: Best Roster in a While. Time to See It in Action

Ryan Mink,

Here’s the debate on the roster strength. The 2019 team that went 14-2 was loaded. It had more depth at corner, Matthew Judon on the edge, and a stacked offensive line. This year’s roster is far better at wide receiver and inside linebacker, and stronger on the defensive line.

The Ravens are No. 9 on ESPN’s ranking of teams’ top five core players. Lamar Jackson, Mark Andrews, Marlon Humphrey, Roquan Smith, and Stanley made the cut. Justin Tucker and Marcus Williams could’ve made it too, and if OBJ returns to form, Baltimore has even more star power.

The practice return of Dobbins, and potentially Gus Edwards, will remind us that running the ball remains a pillar of Baltimore offense, regardless of coordinator. I’m bullish on the prospects of a healthy Dobbins, in a contract year, shredding defenses that can’t devote so much attention to stopping the run.

With full attendance and the intensity of practices turned up at minicamp, the front office will evaluate whether any weak spots remain and where additions may need to be made before training camp kicks off at the end of July. Eric DeCosta watches every practice.

Stock Rising, Stock Falling Ahead Of Ravens Minicamp

Bo Smolka, Pressbox


OL DANIEL FAALELE: The Ravens have an open left guard spot after losing Ben Powers to free agency, and head coach John Harbaugh mentioned earlier this year that Faalele, the second-year tackle, would be in the mix for the job. That was notable, given that Faalele was exclusively a right tackle at Minnesota and filled in at left tackle at times for the Ravens but never played guard.

Ben Cleveland and John Simpson are considered the front-runners, but Faalele got plenty of run at left guard in the final OTA session open to the media and Harbaugh said he was pleased with what he saw.

“I wanted to see what he looked like before we got out of the minicamp and the OTAs at left guard, and he looked good,” Harbaugh said. “He could stay a little more square and things like that, but his feet look good, his hands look good, he’s able to punch quickly with his hands and react pretty quickly in there, so I wouldn’t rule him out as a potential left guard.”

Harbaugh often likes to say, “the more you can do,” in assessing the value of his players, and Faalele is trying to show that. Harbaugh also praised the effort of Cleveland and Simpson and added, “It’s going to be quite a fight for that spot.”