Ravens LT Ronnie Stanley has the most to prove in training camp
Every Baltimore Ravens player will be playing with a chip on his shoulder after the team’s abysmal 2021 finish, but one formerly injured star may have the most to prove in 2022.
The Ravens’ offensive scheme can’t be discussed without one very important player in the trenches: Ronnie Stanley.
The stalwart left tackle has served as Lamar Jackson’s trusty blind-side protector since Stanley was drafted by Baltimore in 2016, and much of the Ravens’ success this season will depend on Stanley’s healthy recovery.
Stanley re-injured his ankle at the start of the 2021 season but appears to be on track to return in time for Week 1. The team will want to avoid a repeat of what happened last year and likely won’t rush Stanley back onto the field, but once Stanley is cleared to play, he’ll carry a colossal weight on his shoulders.
ESPN’s Jamison Hensley wrote up a brief training camp preview for the Baltimore Ravens and listed Stanley as the player with the most to prove:
"“If Stanley can bounce back, Jackson will have one of the best blind-side protectors, and the Ravens’ offensive line can become one of the league’s best. If Stanley struggles or misses significant time once again, Baltimore would be forced to replace him with a long-time right tackle (either Ja’Wuan James or Morgan Moses) and would need to think about investing in another left tackle next offseason.”"
Ravens’ Ronnie Stanley expected to return to elite form and stay healthy in 2022
After seeing their offensive line fall apart in 2021, the Ravens need Stanley back at left tackle to avoid another painful game of musical chairs.
Stanley stands as the team’s most talented offensive tackle and adds unparalleled stability and leadership to the line and without him, the Ravens’ offense suffers in all areas.
Stanley has spent two stints on injured reserve in the last two seasons, and the Ravens not only need to see him recover in time in 2022, but they need to see him return to elite form as well.
Two years have passed since Stanley earned his first All-Pro and Pro Bowl honors, and Stanley has only played a total of seven games in that span.
The only thing worse than not having Stanley in the lineup may be seeing Stanley struggle in pass protection and the running game and turn into a mere shell of the dominant tackle he once was.
Stanley joins a long list of Ravens players — Lamar Jackson, J.K. Dobbins, Gus Edwards, Marcus Peters, etc. — who need to put together a successful comeback season in 2022. Here’s hoping for a swift and mighty recovery.