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6 undrafted rookies with the best chances to make the Ravens 2023 roster

It’s going to be tough for any member from this year’s crop to make the cut but there are a few with decent odds.

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RB Keaton Mitchell is one of a handful of undrafted rookies that could push for a roster spot.
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The Baltimore Ravens have had an undrafted rookie free agent make their initial 53-man roster in 18 of the last 19 years. Their league-leading streak of 16 straight years was snapped in 2020 which wasn’t surprising given that the COVID-19 pandemic caused the preseason to be cancelled that year.

Even though the large 18-man crop this year will have the benefit of live exhibition contests outside of a practice setting, they still face an uphill battle to make the 2023 roster. The Ravens are deep at several positions on both sides of the ball and ones where they aren’t will most likely be addressed by the onset of training camp with an experienced veteran free agent signing.

Despite the odds being stacked against the vast majority of them, barring injury to established players, here are six undrafted rookies who have the best chances to make the Ravens 2023 roster.

RB Keaton Mitchell

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The former East Carolina University standout has garnered the most hype and fanfare of this year’s undrafted class and for good reason. He was one of the most explosive big-play threats in the nation last year thanks to his blazing speed, impressive footwork and vision.

Mitchell led the Pirates with a career-high 201 carries for 1,452 rushing yards and 14 touchdowns according to Sports Reference and ranked first in the AAC in yards per carry with 7.2. He also recorded career-highs with 27 receptions for 252 receiving yards and another touchdown.

The Ravens are well-stocked at running back as it currently stands after re-signing Justice Hill in free agency and both J.K. Dobbins and Gus Edwards nearly two years removed from their respective severe knee injuries. However, injuries can occur in preseason games or practice which would open the door for a player like Mitchell to earn not only a spot on the roster but a featured role early in the season, as was the case for Ty’Son Williams in 2021.

DT Kaieem Caeser, Ohio

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The former Ohio University Bobcat will finally get a chance to show what he’s got once the pads come on in training camp and he couldn’t have landed in a better place to begin his career. The Ravens have a history of unearthing hidden gems in the front seven as undrafted free agents and developing them into quality depth pieces and even starters.

Given that their defensive line has multiple players entering contract years in 2023, Ceasar could push for one of the last spots on the depth chart or at least garner practice squad consideration like many of their developmental interior defensive lineman have in recent years.

He had the best season of his collegiate career in 2022 where he showed a lot of improvement as a pass-rusher with a career-high 5.5 sacks after having just three sacks the previous three seasons combined. He was also stout against the run and recorded career-highs with 28 tackles including seven for loss per Sports Reference, showing that he could potentially be a penetrating force as well.

OLB Malik Hamm

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While edge defender is one of the most likely area that the Ravens will add an established veteran at some point before the regular season, it is also a position where they firmly believe that college production can translate to the pro-level. The former Lafayette College standout and Baltimore native was high productive during his collegiate career. He was a five-time All Patriot League selection and two-time conference Defensive Player of the Year who finished with 32 career sacks, including a career single-season high of 8.5 in 2022.

Hamm will need to stand out on defense and special teams as well to make this team and potentially dissuade the front office from believing they still need veteran reinforcements. He tied for the tied for the fourth-most blocked kicks in the nation last season with three so if he can show some impactful promise on special teams in particular, it would help strengthen his case tremendously.

CB Corey Mayfield Jr.

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Cornerback is another spot where the Ravens may very well wind up adding a proven veteran via free agency but even if they do, their need for a new slot corner will likely persist unless they add the likes of Troy Hill or Bryce Callahan. The former Roadrunner lacks desired measurables but on film, displayed all the traits of a defensive back that can excel inside while possessing perimeter capability as well.

He has good ball skills, isn’t afraid to come downhill and contribute in run support, is a dangerous blitzer off the edge, and is sticky in coverage. Mayfield Jr. is coming off his best season in which he recorded career-highs across the board with 63 total tackles, six tackles for a loss, three interceptions, three sacks including a strip that resulted in a forced fumble, and 13 pass breakups.

OL Jaylon Thomas

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The Ravens value positional versatility among all of their offensive linemen and even though they have the former Mustang listed as a guard, he has experience playing multiple positions in college. He was a four-year starter and he didn’t allow a sack in 12 games as a fifth-year senior last season. The 6-foot-5 and 311-pounder has good size and even though the team is already well-stocked at guard, they could always try to make him a into a developmental project on the practice squad.

WR Dontay Demus

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The former University if Maryland standout likely faces the longest odds of all the players listed in this article. The biggest reasons being that the Ravens completely remodeled their depth chart at his position with multiple additions this past offseason, the two most notable being three-time Pro Bowl veteran Odell Beckham Jr. and his fellow rookie Zay Flowers who the team selected in the first round at No. 22 overall.

Nevertheless, the local product from Washington D.C. could still find a way onto the roster as the sixth and likely last receiver on the initial 53 man roster if he outperforms both James Proche and Tylan Wallace on offense and special teams. Separating and proving himself in the often overlooked third phase of the game will play arguably the most significant factor in his odds of making the team but at 6-foot-3 and 220 pounds, he would provide a bigger-bodied target at the position that they otherwise don’t have among the projected top five.

Demus was on his way to being one of the top receiver prospects in the 2022 NFL Draft when a torn ACL cut his breakout 2021 season short after he put up an impressive 28 catches for 507 yards and three touchdowns in just five games according to Sports Reference. He was a big play waiting to happen and averaged 18.1 yards per catch but after returning for a fifth season in 2022, he couldn’t recapture his pre-injury form and was only able to manage 22 catches for 233 yards and one touchdown.