The Ravens still need to sign a veteran wideout before the start of the regular season, but in the meantime, Bateman has been making his presence felt in the preseason.
Despite sitting out for the Ravens’ preseason opener against the Tennessee Titans, Bateman recorded arguably his best practice of training camp on Saturday, catching nearly everything thrown his way.
Per Ravens writer Ryan Mink, the 2021 first-rounder opened the day “with a release during 1-on-1s that was so filthy the cornerback hit the turf.”
Bateman also beat Kyle Fuller and probably would have recorded a deep touchdown had Fuller not hauled him down and gotten flagged for pass interference.
Bateman made a few other nice catches, generating good chemistry with Lamar Jackson, and one of his many impressive plays resulted in a 50-yard touchdown.
Ravens wideout Rashod Bateman is developing nicely into a WR1
The Athletic’s Jeff Zrebiec briefly detailed the play below:
"“One of Jackson’s best throws was a rope to Bateman down the far sideline that went for a 50-yard touchdown. Bateman had some separation from Damarion Williams and Jefferson was late getting over to help. Jackson and Bateman took full advantage.”"
In his rookie year, Bateman posted 46 catches for a decent 515 yards in 12 games along with one touchdown. Bateman suffered an injury that saw him miss the start of the 2021 season, but he should be healthy to start 2022 and has every reason to up his production levels.
With another year of experience under his belt, Bateman is primed to develop into the team’s most lethal wide receiver and serve as Jackson’s favorite target — well, probably second-favorite given Mark Andrews’ irreplaceable impact in the passing offense.
Fans have yet to see Bateman suit up for a preseason game as the Ravens are understandably exercising caution with all their formerly injured players.
Bateman’s progress nonetheless should buoy the team’s hopes of fielding an efficient passing attack in 2022 complete with a healthy Lamar Jackson, Mark Andrews, and Bateman, among others.