Marshal Yanda Surprisingly Attending Ravens Offseason Workout Program
It’s not often you’ll see Marshal Yanda hanging around the Under Armour Performance Center in April.
But this year, he surprisingly is. He’s just keeping a low profile. (Typical Yanda.)
The 12-year veteran didn’t address the media Tuesday alongside other big-name Ravens. He wasn’t featured in workout videos. He’s just quietly working back from a fractured ankle that ended his 2017 season in Week 2.
How’s the rehab coming?
“Marshal is great. He’s actually here, showed up Day One and he was a great sight to see,” fellow offensive lineman Alex Lewis said. “We really enjoy his company, and we’re excited for him to be here right now.”
I bet it was a great sight to see. The Ravens don’t publicly keep offseason attendance records, but it’s hard to recall by memory the last time Yanda was present this early.
He didn’t return until training camp last year as he rehabbed from shoulder surgery. That was the same timetable in 2013 after he had another shoulder surgery following Super Bowl XLVII. He’s also chosen to stay at home in Iowa with his family when he’s healthy.
Whatever the reason is that he’s decided to spend part of the offseason in Baltimore this time around, his teammates and coaches are glad to have him.
Stop Toying With Us, OF COURSE Tom Brady Is Returning
I’m sorry. I just can’t buy into reports that indicate New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady might not play in 2018.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that technically Brady hasn’t committed to playing this season, but then immediately added that he’s expected to play.
"I believe he's going to be there," a source told Schefter. "However, having said that, we're dealing with a human being. Things can change. But I do believe he will be playing."
Yes, the fact that Brady is expected to play but is a “human being” and could change his mind dominated Wednesday’s NFL news cycle.
For Ravens fans that would like to see Brady retire and stop torturing Baltimore and the rest of the NFL, it’s better to chalk this up to typical offseason “news” while we await the schedule and draft.
Brady didn’t attend the start of the Patriots voluntary offseason workout program while on family vacation in Qatar. But OF COURSE, he’ll be back next season, and the road to the Super Bowl will likely once again travel though Foxborough. Ravens fans hoping it’d be any different would probably be setting themselves up for disappointment.
For more proof that he’ll be back, the NFL Network is reporting that the 41-year-old veteran is seeking a new contract before the season begins.
“The Patriots have a history of extending Brady's deal with two years remaining on the standing contract,” wrote NFL.com’s Chris Wessling. “In which case, it's not unreasonable for Brady to expect a renegotiation with an annual average of $14 million due in the final two years of his current agreement.”
Dez Bryant Camp Quiet; No Indication of His Interest in Baltimore
No, I don’t have a Dez Bryant update for you.
As of this morning, nothing new has been revealed since initial reports that the Ravens were interested in the Pro Bowl receiver. But we still don’t know how aggressive General Manager Ozzie Newsome has been and whether Bryant wants to come to Baltimore.
One would assume Bryant will want to make a decision and sign with a team before a major influx of wide receivers infiltrate the NFL via the draft one week from today.
Cluster Buster: Sorting Through NFL Draft’s Top Tight Ends
There’s a high probability that the Ravens will draft a tight end with one of their first three picks. Shoot, they could use their first-rounder on one, especially if they trade back.
Perhaps the Ravens’ biggest remaining need is a pass-catching tight end, as Nick Boyle and Maxx Williams, the only two tight ends on the roster, are more known for their blocking.
“If the draft goes somewhat as predicted, Baltimore’s best option will be to trade back, accumulate more draft capital and select later in the first round. Regardless, wherever they pick, the Ravens’ first selection will be a tight end,” wrote Baltimore Beatdown’s Logan Levy in a bold predictions blog. “Baltimore will have to be aggressive when selecting a tight end as there is a scenario in which they would miss out on the top three tight ends in class, if they don’t select one in the first round.”
If the Ravens do wait until after the first round to nab a tight end, there will still be options. In the video below, former scouts Daniel Jeremiah and Bucky Brooks break down the top options and predict when they’ll be selected.
Hayden Hurst (South Carolina)
Dallas Goedert (South Dakota State)
Mike Gesicki (Penn State)
Ian Thomas (Indiana)
Chris Herndon (Miami)
Mark Andrews (Oklahoma)
Troy Fumagalli (Wisconsin)
Ravens Change Game Plan by Selling Single-Game Tickets With Schedule Release
You’ve probably seen that you can buy single-game tickets earlier than usual this year.
No? Here ya go ...
This usually doesn’t happen for another couple months, but The Baltimore Sun’s Jeff Barker wrote that the Ravens are changing up their strategy to better compete with secondary ticket brokers.
“It’s a change in the business model a little bit,” Senior Vice President of Ticket Sales and Operations Baker Koppelman said. “We’re adapting to the world that is in front of us.”