The Ravens wide receivers group is a position of strength this year after only producing two or three viable options in 2013. The team knew that they sorely needed to upgrade and replace the fearless Anquan Boldin, and they did just that by picking up the similarly tough Steve Smith. They have also added a number of promising rookies to the mix to round out what promises to be a solid crew.
As it stands today, we know that five players are essentially locked into the final roster at the wide receiver position: Torrey Smith, Steve Smith, Jacoby Jones, Marlon Brown, and Michael Campanaro. Some would argue that Campanaro is on the bubble since he was a seventh round draft selection, but the Ravens traded back into the draft to take him. Couple that with the fact that they rarely give up on draft picks this early, and he should be safe by default.
That leaves Jeremy Butler, LaQuan Williams, Deonte Thompson, Mike Willie, Gerrard Shepard, Jace Davis, and Kamar Aiken to battle for what could be only one or two roster spots. Usually the fifth and sixth wide receivers in a group have to play special teams, which gives the edge to Thompson and Williams. The Ravens will most likely want to keep a solid developmental receiver on the roster as well. So far Butler is the best bet for that role after he has impressed early in camp.
It will be tough for the Ravens to keep more than six receivers on the active roster, but it isn’t unheard of. If Butler continues to impress through training camp, he could be locked in behind Campanaro. The Ravens have shown a willingness to play guys regardless of draft status, which helps both the undrafted Butler and Davis. I would also expect the Ravens to keep at least one of these guys on the practice squard, as long as they clear waivers.
Who do you think will make the final roster at wide receiver?