Takeaway No. 1 from Ravens OTAs: Wide receiver corps needs more help
The Marquise Brown trade first raised concerns about the state of the Ravens’ wide receiver room heading into 2022. After OTAs, those concerns became even more valid.
Obviously it’s too early to tell, and Lamar Jackson has been absent from practice, but reporters noted that Rashod Bateman struggled on several plays. Bateman had no problem creating separation from his defenders and getting open looks, but he couldn’t nail the catch.
On one play, Bateman beat Brandon Stephens on a deep pass but couldn’t hold on for the would-be touchdown; later in practice, Bateman dropped another pass on a shorter route, and he dropped one more in a red zone drill in which he beat Marlon Humphrey with a sneaky move but let the ball slip out of his hands.
Bateman is primed to enjoy a breakout season in 2022 as Baltimore’s WR1, but this brief glimpse of his performance will light fires under those who believe the Ravens need to acquire a reliable veteran wideout.
As for the other receivers, James Proche recorded a drop and immediately punished himself with push-ups, and Tylan Wallace had a few drops as well. Devin Duvernay caught a pass and ran five yards for a touchdown, but that may have been due to defensive coverage issues.
All in all, not a bad kick-off to OTAs. The Ravens pose as one of the biggest sleeping giants ahead of 2022, and it’s only a matter of time before they erupt.