Jacoby Jones played an absolutely pivotal role as both a receiver and kick returner during the Baltimore Ravens‘ Super Bowl run; there’s not denying that. But I can’t help but think it a temporary situation when the Ravens deem Jones their No. 2 receiver in training camp behind Torrey Smith, which is what the trustworthy Aaron Wilson is reporting in The Baltimore Sun after speaking with receivers coach Jim Hostler.
However, it’s Hostler’s other statements that make me think Baltimore is holding out hope that Tandon Doss, Deonte Thompson, David Reed and LaQuan Williams use this as motivation and eventually wrest this role for themselves, moving Jones to his better fit as a big-play peripheral option.
“Speed is always a factor in this game, but it’s got to be able to play,” Hostler said, via The Baltimore Sun. “It’s not just as easy as how fast you can run, obviously, because then everybody would be the fastest guys out there. We’re fortunate right now. We’ve got a few fast guys that can play, and that’s what it’s really all about. We had fast guys last year that could run faster than Anquan (Boldin), but they couldn’t play better than him. All of that adds that up to a football player, and that’s really what it’s all about. We’re just fortunate that a couple of those guys that are football players happen to be fast.”
Indeed, trading Boldin leaves B-more with quite the conundrum, as quarterback Joe Flacco has familiarity but has not displayed anywhere near that kind of chemistry with the other receivers on roster. Flacco-to-Boldin was something special to watch, and now other receivers battle for that favorite-target role — or any role at all — in camp.
“It’s been good,” Hostler said. “They’re working hard. There’s a great competition. Obviously, as we move forward, the competition is going to get closer to training camp and through training camp, it’s going to get closer to the season, and that’s going to pick it up a notch. And all those guys had an opportunity to compete for that job.”