Anquan Boldin is gone. There are no excuses. No young receiver on the Baltimore Ravens roster can look themselves in the mirror and say that someone is holding them back. The battle is amongst themselves.
The Ravens organization has so much trust in the young crop of receivers that they aren’t even hinting at selecting a veteran in free agency.
Laquan Williams came into the same rookie class in 2011 as Torrey Smith did. David Reed came in a year earlier in the 2010 draft class. Tommy Streeter came in as an undrafted free agent in 2012 as well as Deonte Thompson.
Thompson, Streeter, Williams and Reed are all projects which means there is a timetable as to how long the Ravens will wait on them to blossom.
“I would say that I like [the wide receiver group] a lot. I think we have more than enough talent right here to be successful. I expect those guys to play extremely well.” Ravens head coach John Habraugh noted to the Baltimore Sun.
Whether the Ravens receiving corps outside of Smith and Jacoby Jones recognizes it or not, it’s shape up or get shipped out after the 2013 season. The Ravens have put themselves in a situation financially where the team can look at what they have on their roster, and if the receivers play well then fine the Ravens have cheap options to go with in the future.
The player I’m picking to win the second wide receiver spot is rookie Aaron Mellette out of Elon University. Mellette is a receiver who likes to fight for the ball like Boldin in a similar fashion.
The rookie posted 97 catches for 1,408 yards in his last season at Elon. It’s a small school, but it’s good to know Mellette has talent. No matter where you are, posting 97 catches for over 1,400 yards is impressive.
But at the end of the day, if the receivers don’t play well, then it provides a situation where the Ravens go into the 2014 offseason with the mindset that they have to overhaul the wide receiver position where at least three wide receivers that were on the team in 2012 may be shipped out.
So the receivers should make the most of it. The Ravens won’t hesitate to replace them if they don’t.