The Baltimore Ravens have done a solid job at retooling the roster through free agency and the NFL Draft but adding one more late offseason veteran always seems to be in Ozzie Newsome‘s wheelhouse. Here are three they could consider.
The Ravens spent two of their first four picks on two talented young tight ends in Hayden Hurst and Mark Andrews. Both are expected to be an integral part of the offense during their rookie seasons but it never hurts to add a veteran into the mix. Julius Thomas has remained untouched in the free agent market since being released by the Miami Dolphins in March and while he isn’t the player he once was, a trusted pass-catcher could be a valuable asset to Joe Flacco‘s arsenal of weapons.
Rookie tight ends rarely have breakout success in the NFL. It’s a tough position to gauge in the first season. That’s not saying Hurst or Andrews don’t possess that potential but a huge bulk of production isn’t to be expected right away. Maxx Williams and Nick Boyle have been relatively ineffective as pass-catchers through their first three seasons in Baltimore and neither of their roster spots is guaranteed. Thomas has proven to be a scoring threat even though injuries have slowed him down in recent seasons. His 6’5″ frame and athleticism provide a big-bodied red zone threat the Ravens desperately need.
Thomas’ impact isn’t limited to the field. He can be a mentor to Hurst and Andrews as they develop and hone their skills at the professional level. Getting 400-500 yards in production with a handful of touchdowns is worth a deal on the cheap if Thomas can prove he’s healthy enough to stay on the field.