ESPN's Jamison Hensley says Ravens rookie RB J.K. Dobbins will "be the primary backup in 2020 to Mark Ingram." Backup is probably the wrong word for this description, but we certainly won't be surprised if Dobbins opens his debut season running behind Ingram. The veteran didn't miss a game last season until Baltimore's meaningless finale, while averaging 5.0 yards per carry and 9.5 yards per catch for the year. We do, however, project the rookie to outscore Ingram -- who will turn 31 in December -- in fantasy for the season.
Ravens HC John Harbaugh sees more deep passes as the next evolution in QB Lamar Jackson's game. "Those corners are going to be one-on-one and those safeties are going to be one-on-one against receivers, especially on some downfield throws, and we got to make them pay for it. We absolutely have to make them pay," Harbaugh said. "The ability to make them pay for tilting their defense toward stopping our run game with a really, really efficient passing game. I do believe that's the next step of this offense. I really do believe Lamar is going to take the next step." Jackson was already efficient on deep balls last year, posting the league's 6th highest passer rating on throws 20+ yards downfield, according to Pro Football Focus. But he ranked just 19th with 55 pass attempts of 20+ yards. It sounds like Harbaugh wants that number to rise in 2020. Baltimore certainly has the right guys at WR to make that happen. Marquise Brown, Miles Boykin and Devin Duvernay all boast plus speed.
According to ESPN's Jamison Hensley, Ravens GM Eric DeCosta had this to say of rookie RB J.K. Dobbins: "We think he's a three-down back. He's been extremely durable. He's an outstanding fit for what we like to do." That doesn't come as a surprise after the team drafted Dobbins in Round 2 and talked about being surprised that he lasted so long. But it's certainly reassuring for the rookie's fantasy outlook -- especially for dynasty leagues.
The Ravens added SMU WR James Proche in the 6th round of the 2020 NFL Draft. You’d be hard-pressed to find a more productive receiver over the past 2 seasons. Proche hauled in 93 balls for 1,199 yards and 12 TDs as a junior in 2018 and then racked up 111 catches, 1,225 yards and 15 scores last year. He tied LSU’s Justin Jefferson for most catches in the country, ranked 13th in receiving yards and finished 4th in receiving TDs. Proche has experience playing both outside and in the slot. And he has some of the most reliable hands in this WR class, dropping only 9 of 312 catchable targets (2.9%) for his career. The knocks against Proche: He faced lower-level competition in the American Conference, is on the small side at 5’11, 201 pounds and is already 23 years old.
The Ravens picked Ohio State LB Malik Harrison in Round 3 of the NFL Draft. Harrison lands in a LB corps with 2 ILB openings, and thus faces immediate starting opportunity. The question will be whether he can earn 3-down duty. Harrison brings good speed and enjoyed a solidly productive career at Ohio State.
The Ravens added Texas WR Devin Duvernay in the 3rd round of the 2020 NFL Draft. Duvernay is coming off a huge 2019 campaign, ranking 3rd in the nation with 106 catches and 5th with 1,386 yards. He accounted for 35% of Texas’ receptions, 37% of the receiving yards and 28% of the TDs. His 2.99 yards per route run ranked 9th among 30 of this year’s top WR prospects. The 5’11, 200-pounder ran a 4.39-second 40 time and tested as a 68th percentile athlete at the Combine. The concern with Duvernay is that he totaled just 70 receptions across his first 3 years on campus, failing to break out until he was a 22-year-old senior. And his 2019 production was largely manufactured, with 42 of his 106 catches coming on screens, according to Pro Football Focus. Still, Duvernay has reliable hands, dangerous speed and is a tackle-breaker after the catch. He played 97% of his snaps from the slot last year and projects to the same position as a pro. Duvernay joins Hollywood Brown and Miles Boykin to give Baltimore some serious speed at WR.
The Ravens added Ohio State RB J.K. Dobbins in the 2nd round of the 2020 NFL Draft. Dobbins burst onto the scene in Columbus, setting the school’s freshman record with 1,403 rushing yards on 194 carries — good for a gaudy 7.2 yards per attempt. He sunk to 4.6 yards per carry on 230 totes as a sophomore but rebounded in a big way this past season: 301 carries, 2,003 yards and 21 TDs. Dobbins was a workhorse, toting it 20+ times in 8 of 14 games and topping 30 carries 3 times. The 5’10, 209-pounder is downhill, no-nonsense runner, finishing top 12 among draft-eligible backs in both yards after contact and missed tackles forced, per Pro Football Focus. Dobbins is also capable in the passing game, tallying 22+ catches in all 3 seasons at Ohio State and averaging 9.1 yards per catch for his career. He joins a crowded backfield in Baltimore alongside Mark Ingram, Gus Edwards and Justice Hill. We’ll see how the situation sorts out this season. But Dobbins projects as the lead back in the long term. Ingram turned 30 this past December.
The Ravens selected LSU LB Patrick Queen with the 28th pick of the NFL Draft. Queen started just 16 games over his 3 seasons with the Tigers and didn't even open 2019 as a starter. He looked impressive after stepping in for suspended LB Michael Divinity, though, and then delivered a 90th-percentile speed score for the position. Queen goes to a Baltimore defense in desperate need of ILBs and should start right away. That makes up for the lack of college production in projecting him to the NFL. He'll land high in our rookie-draft IDP rankings and figures to be a redraft factor in 2020.
The Chiefs have agreed to a new 1-year deal with WR Sammy Watkins that pays $9 million in base salary with another $7 million available in incentives, according to Terez Paylor of The Kansas City Star. The move saves Kansas City $5 million in 2020 cap space. ESPN's Adam Schefter reports that the deal also includes a no-trade clause. New contracts for Watkins and WR Demarcus Robinson hurt the 2020 outlook for last year's 2nd-round pick, Mecole Hardman. The youngster could be a value in dynasty trades this offseason, though. Neither Watkins nor Robinson is signed beyond 2020. Watkins, meanwhile, should remain K.C.'s #2 wideout.
The Jaguars on Saturday traded DE Calais Campbell to the Ravens for a 5th-round pick. It's obviously a salary-cap move by Jacksonville, but one bound to negatively impact the pass rush. Campbell spent the past 3 seasons with the Jaguars and helped the team finish 2 of those among the league's top 7 in sacks. Campbell posted the 2 largest sack totals of his career (14.5 and 10.5) in 2017 and 2018 before falling back to 6.5 last season. But his 25 QB hits in 2019 marked the 2nd most of his career, behind only the 30 of his first Jacksonville campaign. Campbell heads into his age-34 season this fall but should help a Baltimore pass rush that ranked just 21st in sacks and 27th in Pro Football Focus pass-rushing grade in 2019.
Ravens WR Marquise Brown had offseason surgery to remove the screw from his left foot, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. Brown had surgery on that foot in January 2019 to repair a Lisfranc injury, so this procedure was likely planned. He's expected to be limited in Baltimore's offseason program but be ready for the start of training camp, per Rapoport. We'll keep an eye on Brown's rehab. Durability remains a concern for the diminutive speedster.
Ravens HC John Harbaugh doesn't believe WR Marquise Brown was at full strength throughout the 2019 season. "Marquise was really not 100 percent most of the year and that was pretty obvious, right?," Harbaugh said. Brown missed most of the offseason recovering from January surgery to repair a Lisfranc injury and dealt with hip, ankle and thigh injuries during the season. He flashed his upside with outings of 4-147-2 in the opener and 7-126 in the playoff loss to the Titans -- but Brown was held under 50 yards in 11 of 15 games. Hopefully a healthy offseason will lead to more consistency in 2020.
Chiefs WR Sammy Watkins told the media on Thursday that he's considering taking the 2020 season off. "I'm really in a different space right now," he said. "I don't know what I'm going to do. If we win it, I might chill out. I might sit out a year." Watkins has dealt with a plethora of injuries throughout his career but is still only 26. We'd frankly be surprised if he steps away -- even for just a year. The bigger question is whether Watkins will be back in Kansas City for the 2020 campaign, when he's due a hefty $13.75 million.
Ravens TE Mark Andrews (ankle) is active for tonight's game against the Titans. He was limited in practice all week, and ESPN's Jamison Hensley notes that Andrews "won't be at full strength" tonight. So there's added risk here -- but Andrews still boasts plenty of upside vs. Tennessee's 27th-ranked TE defense.
Ravens TE Mark Andrews (ankle) is listed as questionable for Saturday's game against the Titans after a limited week of practice. It's slightly concerning that he's banged up coming off the bye week, but we've heard nothing to suggest that Andrews is in danger of missing this game. He's an upside fantasy play vs. Tennessee's 27th-ranked TE defense.
Ravens S Earl Thomas (knee) is inactive for today's game against the Steelers. It's no surprise, given that Baltimore has made clear it's resting key players in a meaningless contest (for them). CB Marcus Peters (chest) and CB Jimmy Smith (groin) are active, but don't expect full playing time for them. Even so, Steelers QB Devlin Hodges keeps the Ravens' defense in play for fantasy.
Ravens QB Lamar Jackson, RB Mark Ingram and TE Mark Andrews are inactive for today’s meaningless game against the Steelers. Don’t expect WR Marquise Brown to play much, if at all. QB Robert Griffin draws the start, but QB Trace McSorley is also expected to play. Gus Edwards and Justice Hill will handle backfield duties. Avoid the WRs and TEs.
Ravens TE Mark Andrews (ankle) and WR Marquise Brown (illness) -- both questionable -- are not expected to play today against the Steelers, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter. That's what we've been assuming all week. The top-seeded Ravens have already announced other lineup changes in a finale that carries no meaning for them. Pittsburgh's team D, meanwhile, carries big upside against Baltimore's offensive skeleton crew.
Ravens QB Lamar Jackson won't play in Sunday's season finale against the Steelers, HC John Harbaugh said. Baltimore locked up the AFC's #1 seed with yesterday's win over the Browns, so the MVP will get the week off. QB Robert Griffin will draw the start for the Ravens, but Harbaugh said that rookie QB Trace McSorley could also hit the field. It's a situation to avoid in Week 17 fantasy lineups. G Marshal Yanda, RB Mark Ingram, S Earl Thomas and DT Brandon Williams will also be held out of Sunday's game.
Ravens TE Mark Andrews (knee) is active for tonight's game against the Jets. He entered questionable and is fine for planned fantasy football use.
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