Eisenberg: 50 Words or Less

081520-Eisenberg
TE Mark Andrews

Various thoughts on various things, all in 50 words or less:

Even though Mark Andrews has piled up terrific numbers with the Ravens, he did so last season while playing just 41 percent of the offense's snaps. I expect that percentage to rise in 2020, perhaps significantly, as he and Nick Boyle take the lead in helping replace Hayden Hurst's load.

As the market for top tight ends skyrockets (see: this week's deals for George Kittle and Travis Kelce), remember that Andrews was NOT a first-round pick, so his rookie contract lasts four years, not five. Though just a third-year player, he is eligible for an extension after this season.

It was interesting how Offensive Coordinator Greg Roman spoke generally at first this week, then suddenly got quite specific when asked how MVP Lamar Jackson could improve in 2020: "Consistency, and then decision-making … if we can get two to five percent better in those areas, it'll be pretty impressive."

My stab at early-camp power rankings on who'll replace Marshal Yanda at right guard: 1) Ben Powers (played well in one start last year); 2) D.J. Fluker, veteran in terrific shape; 3) Ben Bredeson (2020 fourth-round pick knows the position); 4) Tyre Phillips (2020 third-round pick switching positions from college).

The NFL owners and players obviously believe daily coronavirus testing is crucial to the chances of staging a successful season (the league and players have agreed to daily testing through Sept. 5). That's a very expensive proposition, which NFL teams can afford but college athletic programs almost surely can't.

The addition of veteran Kenjon Barner means there's going to be genuine competition for the job (jobs?) of returning punts and kickoffs. I'm sure the Ravens would love for rookie James Proche II to take command, but it'll come down to who is best at holding onto the ball.

Although NFL teams are obsessed with their competition being as fair as possible, they might have to take a collective chill pill in 2020. It appears there could be differing levels of attendance in different cities, which could mean differing levels of home-field advantage. Not fair but so it goes.

Pernell McPhee played more for the Ravens in 2019 than he did for other teams in recent years before injuring his triceps in Week 7. But I didn't know (until Pro Football Reference informed me) that statistically he was the team's surest tackler among major contributors. Didn't miss one tackle.

It'll be interesting to see how Defensive Coordinator Wink Martindale deploys McPhee and Jihad Ward this season. Pass rushers? Run stoppers? Both are active and versatile players who don't figure to start but were around the ball a lot last season. Not being talked about much but they'll have roles.

Bizarre to think that when the Ravens don pads for training camp practices at the Under Armour Performance Center starting Monday, it'll mark their first football contact since January. I'm sure none of the players have gone anywhere close to that long without hitting someone on a field.

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