Some feel the Baltimore Ravens will be a dark-horse contender this season in the AFC.
They inked quarterback Lamar Jackson to a huge new contract, ending a months-long standoff between him and management, and they added wide receivers Odell Beckham Jr. and Zay Flowers to upgrade what was a frightfully weak unit last season.
Baltimore was heavily dependent on Pro Bowl tight end Mark Andrews in 2022, and this season he should have less pressure on him to produce.
Andrews had been out with an injury, leading to questions as to whether he will be ready for Week 1, but head coach John Harbaugh said people should expect to see Andrews on the field, via the team’s Twitter account.
Head coach John Harbaugh on Mark Andrews status: pic.twitter.com/jD66OdaBWa
— Baltimore Ravens (@Ravens) September 4, 2023
Andrews may not be Travis Kelce or George Kittle, but he was productive in 2022 with 847 yards and five touchdowns, which got him his third Pro Bowl nod in the last four seasons.
But other than him, the Ravens didn’t have any receivers who had as many as 500 receiving yards last season.
Beckham may not be as capable as he used to be prior to his two torn ACLs, but he may be able to produce some spurts of play where he reminds people of his early seasons in the NFL.
Flowers, who was a first-round pick in April’s draft, is thought to have star potential in his own right.
Much of Baltimore’s hopes will fall on Jackson’s play and his ability to avoid injury, but if he’s productive and healthy, they could have a say in how the AFC plays out this year.NEXT: Analyst Explains How Odell Beckham Jr. Can Impact Ravens