Presented by

Mailbag: Could the Ravens Go After Chase Young?

Washington Commanders defensive end Chase Young (99) takes to the field before an NFL football game against the Dallas Cowboys, Sunday, Jan. 8, 2023, in Landover, Md.

Downing: The chatter around Chase Young started when Bleacher Report put out an article earlier this offseason speculating about the Ravens bringing the former No. 2 overall pick to Baltimore. Young has dynamic talent, but injuries have limited his production in a big way the last two years. The Washington pass rusher has played in just 12 games over the last two seasons and put up 1.5 total sacks. He's heading into the final year of his rookie deal after the Commanders declined his fifth-year option. Young's physical talent is undeniable, but staying healthy and putting everything together to be a productive pro has been another story.

The Ravens could use some help at outside linebacker as Tyus Bowser is opening camp on the non-football injury list, and last year's veteran pass rushers Justin Houston and Jason Pierre-Paul both remain unsigned. General Manager Eric DeCosta has also shown a willingness to make big-time trades, like he did for Roquan Smith, Marcus Peters, Calais Campbell and Yannick Ngakoue. However, I would be surprised if the Ravens pulled off a move for Young. Despite his injury history, Washington would likely want a premium for him given his talent and where he was selected in the draft. The Ravens also like their young pass rushers in Odafe Oweh and David Ojabo. Young's potential is alluring, but adding him would potentially block opportunities for Oweh and Ojabo. The Ravens may still add some insurance at outside linebacker, but the price to get Young may be too much at this stage of the game.

Mink: The short answer is, yes, I expect that we will see both players at some point during training camp. When? That's much harder to predict. Both players are starting training camp on the physically unable to perform list.

Rashod Bateman sat out minicamp after getting a cortisone shot in his foot, as he continues to work through the effects of last year's Lisfranc foot injury/surgery. Those rehabs take time, and the Ravens have shown their patience with players returning from major injuries. They want Bateman feeling totally comfortable. I don't expect that should take too long considering Bateman was already out practicing some during OTAs. That's an indication that structurally things are OK.

As for Dobbins, it's unclear when he'll come off the PUP list because there's less information about what put him on the list. Maybe Dobbins will be on the field at the start of training camp. Maybe he'll be there tomorrow, or in a week. We just don't know. Head Coach John Harbaugh will surely be asked about Dobbins after practice Wednesday.

Both are super talented players who can help take the Ravens offense to great heights. Both are also in prove-it years after injuries have stymied their breakout potential. Especially given the fact that they're in a new scheme, they'll need some practice time with the rest of the offense if they're going to start the year with a bang.

Mink: With the Maulet addition, the Ravens now have 10 cornerbacks on the roster, not including versatile defensive back Brandon Stephens. Behind Marlon Humphrey and Rock Ya-Sin, it's a wide-open competition.

I think Maulet is a prime contender for the slot cornerback job. He played that position the past two years for the Steelers and is coming off a career year with 59 tackles, two sacks, one interception and one forced fumble. He started six games and played in all 17. Maulet led the Steelers in special teams tackles, so that gives him more value and improves his chances of making the 53-man roster. If handicapping it now, I think he makes the team.

There's plenty of competition, however. Once healthy, Pepe Williams will contend for that slot position. So will Ar'Darius Washington, who has done well there in practices so far this summer. If Jalyn Armour-Davis, Trayvon Mullen, rookie Kyu Blu Kelly or somebody else shines outside, the Ravens also have the option of using Humphrey in the slot when needed.

Downing: Injuries can be fluky and difficult to predict, but the Ravens invest a great deal of time and resources into player wellness. They have done extensive studies around practice schedule, nutrition and recovery, and they are constantly tweaking their program to help the players stay as healthy as possible. Many of these changes were implemented before the 2022 season, as the Ravens altered their practice time, the intensity of camp practices and the ramp-up period during training camp.

The team also made a change in the strength program this offseason, promoting Scott Elliott to be the team's head strength and conditioning coach. Elliott works to provide programs that work best for each player, and that also plays into injury prevention. Nobody within the Ravens is naïve to think that all injuries can be avoided – players often talk about how the sport has a 100 percent injury rate – but the team does everything it can to avoid injuries and ensure they have the healthiest roster possible going into the season.

Related Content