Welcome to lunchtime links, where we round up all the Ravens news from around the web in one convenient place. Today, the first day of summer, we talk about how Joe Flacco is getting comfortable in the new offense, whose stock is up or down after mandatory minicamp, and why Daryl Smith wants to retire as a Raven.
ESPN’s Jamison Hensley has been very impressed with the way Joe Flacco looks in the new offensive scheme so far. The system should prove to be a great fit for Flacco, who needs a steady run game to set up the occasional deep ball. Flacco has a big arm but was pressured far too much last year. Getting the ball out quicker, coupled with an effective running game, should go a long way in helping him return to form.
With mandatory minicamp concluding, Adam Lefkoe and Glenn Younes bring us an analysis of whose stock is up and whose stock is down via Bleacher Report. Some, like Marlon Brown, definitely hurt themselves a lot after three days of activity. He isn’t going to lose his roster spot but when you play at a crowded position you can’t afford to drop too many balls.
Newly signed cornerback Dominique Franks has lined up in many different formations in the past and feels like he will play a versatile role with the Ravens as well. It’s great to see Franks open to playing any position or role, because that’s what he will have to do to simply make the team. Hopefully he can at least be a contributor on special teams, which is probably his ticket to sticking on the final roster.
Daryl Smith proved to be an excellent fit for the defense last year, and now the veteran wants to retire as a Raven. After signing a contract extension and stepping right into a major role last year with no hiccups, we would say he has an excellent chance to do so. It looks like the 11 year vet still has plenty left in the tank.
Shehan Peiris at the Bleacher Report feels like the Ravens should be concerned about their pass rush this season. Or the lack thereof. I agree that they have a right to be concerned if you are looking at the second half of last season, where it was essentially non existent. And Suggs and Dumervil aren’t exactly spring chickens anymore. If Ngata can get some penetration it will help tremendously.
Some much better news coming out of camp is that the Ravens are extremely healthy. All projected starters were practicing at camp, and there is only one injury worth noting. That’s a huge hurdle considering all the catastrophic injuries that often take place this time of year.
How confident do you feel about the Ravens now that camp has concluded?