We're now beyond the halfway point of the NFL's 17-week season, with the Ravens riding high at 7-2 atop the AFC North, tied with Kansas City for best record in the AFC.
The Ravens have a ton of players deserving of individual kudos. Here are my picks for Midseason Ravens Awards:
QB Lamar Jackson
Jackson may win the league's MVP award for the second time. His eye-popping 71.5 completion percentage is the best in the league and reflects how he's taken his accuracy to another level, throwing with confidence from a variety of angles. He's still an elite runner, but he's being strategic with his scrambling, using his mobility to create throwing opportunities in ways that only he can. At times, Jackson looks almost serene in the pocket, moving calmly to avoid pressure as he probes downfield.
In his first season with Offensive Coordinator Todd Monken's system, Jackson has embraced the responsibility of making more checks at the line of scrimmage and looks like he's been playing in the system for years. Jackson's final stats may not be as gaudy as they were in 2019, but he has never played his position any better.
TE Mark Andrews
Leading all NFL tight ends with six touchdown catches, Andrews is a dominant player who shares an unbreakable chemistry with Jackson. Andrews can elude defenders with his athleticism and punish them with his physicality, and he's just one touchdown shy of tying Todd Heap's franchise record of 41 career TD catches. Andrews has also become a much better blocker than he was as a rookie in 2018, and his intensity is relentless. It's hard to keep improving when you're as good as Andrews, but he's still doing it.
ILB Roquan Smith
It's no surprise to see Smith leading the team in tackles. He has the fourth-highest Pro Football Focus (PFF) grade of any inside linebacker in the league and is tied for the third-highest grade in coverage. But his impact goes beyond statistics. From the moment he walked into the locker room after being traded by the Bears in midseason last year, the All-Pro linebacker has set the pulse for the defense. He inspires teammates, his motor is relentless and excels at every facet of playing inside linebacker.
DT Justin Madubuike
Leading the league's interior linemen with a career-high 7.5 sacks, Madubuike has been a dominant force on a weekly basis. His ability to bring pressure from up the middle or wherever he lines up along the defensive line has been the catalyst for Baltimore leading the league in sacks. Madubuike is making himself a ton of money in a contract year, but he's not chasing stats. He's become a consistent force who creates plays for himself and others to make plays. Quarterbacks simply hate to see Madubuike coming.
S Geno Stone
Did you expect Stone to lead the NFL with six interceptions? Neither did he, but Stone seized his opportunity and has made it dangerous for quarterbacks to throw in his direction. Stone has made a pick in four straight games, but perhaps his most important one occurred in London against the Titans when they were mounting a second-half comeback. Stone's interception turned the momentum in the Ravens' favor, and they haven't lost since. Stone's big plays in timely moments (he also had a clutch one in Cincinnati in the end zone) have been a huge storyline this season.
WR Zay Flowers
Flowers has been an impact rookie, adding speed, sizzle and explosiveness to the passing attack. He's had plenty of highlights already, but his leaping 52-yard catch against the Bengals in Week 2 may have been his best moment. Flowers beat two defenders on the play, and it set up a touchdown pass from Jackson to Andrews that was part of an important win over a division rival.
WR Odell Beckham Jr.
Beckham waited much longer than he expected to make his first touchdown catch of the season in Week 9, but it came on his birthday, which made it more special. Everyone on the team wanted Beckham to get it, including Jackson, who went wild when Beckham caught Tyler Huntley's pass in the end zone. It was the perfect way to cap a near perfect day in a 37-3 thrashing of the Seahawks.
Jackson's One-Leg Touchdown Pass in Week 8
Jackson has made some remarkable throws this season, but his touchdown toss to Andrews off one leg in Week 8 is hard to top. It was so Lamar-like, showing his ability to use his athleticism and anticipation as a passer.
Jackson's perfectly placed pass to Nelson Agholor in Week 2 wasn't bad either.
RB Keaton Mitchell
The undrafted rookie announced his potential to be an impact player in the second of the season with his 138-yard performance in Week 9. A 40-yard run gave Mitchell his first touchdown, but he followed that with a 60-yard scamper that showed his ability to break tackles, as well as his speed.
Mitchell's potential to be an X-factor down the stretch is clear.