The arrival of training camps always bring a refreshing feeling of optimism to any team part of the NFL, doesn't it? Whether your team is coming off a horrible campaign or off winning the chip, there is always time for improvement and summer camps tend to bring hype and hopes to all fanbases across the nation.
The Ravens, for one, have more than one reason to feel good about the upcoming 2023 season.
Baltimore brought back QB Lamar Jackson when everything felt like a lost cause regarding his extension and future with the team.
The Ravens inked veteran wideouts Odell Beckham Jr. and Nelson Agholor, drafted WR Zay Flowers with a first-round pick, kept their backfield intact while adding a star to it in Melvin Gordon III, and will welcome back TE Mark Andrews for his sixth season as a pro.
The defense has suffered some casualties with Marcus Peters and Calais Campbell departing for greener pastures, but that doesn't mean the Ravens don't feature one of the most dominant inside linebacker pairings, or an elite-level CB1 in Marlon Humphrey.
When discussing and pointing out the "biggest reason for optimism" heading into 2023 for Bleacher Report, Kristopher Knox focused on "Lamar Jackson's contract" and the Ravens' "new-look receiving corps," as the main reasons for the Flock Nation to remain optimistic about what's ahead for Baltimore.
"Will Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson finally stay healthy after finishing each of the last two seasons on the sidelines? That remains to be seen, but the Baltimore faithful no longer have to endure Jackson’s contract nightmare. After initially giving Jackson the franchise tag, the Ravens locked him up with a five-year, $260 million contract. While this won’t ensure that the 2019 MVP is under center for Week 18, it guarantees (barring preseason injury) that he’ll be there come Week 1. And Jackson will be bringing a few new faces along for the ride. The Ravens hired Todd Monken as offensive coordinator and added Nelson Agholor, Odell Beckham Jr. and rookie Zay Flowers to their receiving corps. While Baltimore won’t abandon a potent rushing attack led by Jackson and J.K. Dobbins, fans should see more offensive balance and a more potent aerial attack in 2023. Pairing that with a defense that ranked third in points allowed last season will give Baltimore legitimate Super Bowl potential. If Jackson can stay healthy, he’ll have the opportunity to challenge the likes of Patrick Mahomes and Joe Burrow for his second MVP."- Kristopher Knox, Bleacher Report
As Knox pointed out, the truth is that had Jackson left Baltimore via trade this summer, things would be looking rather murky for the Flock Nation.
With that issue solved, though, and with a super-improved receiving corps as well as the addition of new OC Todd Monken, this franchise can only put on weekly shows at least on that side of the ball in 2023 and that should be more than enough reason for all Ravens' fanatics out there to keep their spirits high entering training camp.
Winning the Super Bowl is always going to be the ultimate goal, and that's a hella tall task. But there are more than a few reasons to believe in this team and their chances of making Joe Burrow and Patrick Mahomes bite the dust. Here's hoping!