Ravens news: J.K. Dobbins shining as a receiver during OTAs

Ravens news, J.K. Dobbins Mandatory Credit: Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports
Ravens news, J.K. Dobbins Mandatory Credit: Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports /

The Baltimore Ravens have made it a point of emphasis to get running back J.K. Dobbins more involved in the passing game this upcoming season.

And given the early results seen in OTAs, the extra reps are already starting to pay dividends.

Dobbins has been one of the standouts of OTAs making plays as both a runner and a receiver. His best day likely came on Tuesday when he hauled in a trio of touchdown passes en route to a very productive day for the offense.

Lamar Jackson was at his sharpest. Dobbins looked like a dual-threat out of the backfield. And the Ravens’ offense looked the best it has all spring.

Dobbins was a large reason why.

The Ravens want J.K. Dobbins to be more involved in the passing game.

The highlight of the entire practice was arguably a leaping grab Dobbins made over linebacker Malik Harrison to secure his first of three would-be receiving scores on the afternoon.

Dobbins looked comfortable running routes and showed off his immense athleticism skying high over Harrison to match the highlight-reel catch.

Those are the types of plays the Ravens want to see from Dobbins who they expect to be very active in the passing game in 2021.

It’s not that Dobbins wasn’t effective as a receiver last season. Despite not playing a featured role in the offense until midway through the year, Dobbins finished with 18 catches for 120 yards.

However, those 18 catches were just shy of half of the team’s total running back receptions (38). Clearly the Ravens are looking to get their running backs more involved in the passing game this season.

And that makes sense too.

Jackson has completed just 89 passes to his running backs over the last two years — a figure that ranks 28th in the NFL.

Baltimore wants to give Jackson other options and perhaps persuade him to check down to running backs to avoid taking unnecessary hits.

Dobbins will be a big part of this, despite his relative lack of experience as a receiving back in high school and college.

Next. Ravens news: 4 notable standouts from 2021 OTAs so far. dark

But if his performance in OTAs is anything to go off of, it doesn’t appear as though he’ll have a difficult time transitioning into his expanded role.