Skip to main content
Presented by

Mailbag: What's Next for the Ravens' 2022 Draft Class?

OLB David Ojabo (left), DT Travis Jones (middle), & T Daniel Faalele (right)
OLB David Ojabo (left), DT Travis Jones (middle), & T Daniel Faalele (right)

Mink: The Ravens' 2022 draft class couldn't have started any better with two Pro Bowlers drafted in the first round in Kyle Hamilton and Tyler Linderbaum. But you're right that several other members of that draft class could step into pivotal roles in 2024.

David Ojabo is going to be a key part of Baltimore's pass rush. Coming off a knee injury that ended his sophomore season early, Ojabo is expected at full speed at some point in training camp, which would presumably mean he's on track to play Week 1. He's played in just five games in two seasons due to his Achilles and knee injuries. If he can get back to, and stay in, peak physical form, Ojabo will make a splash because he's an athletic freak who is talented and works hard. He'll get sacks, evidenced by his two in five games. If the Ravens are going to lead the league in sacks again, Ojabo is going to need to produce.

Defensive tackle Travis Jones is a player that I think has taken a substantial step forward this offseason. He's lost some weight and looks more explosive than a year ago. Already arguably the strongest player on the team, Jones is in position to have a breakout third year. He still has top-notch veteran Michael Pierce in front of him, but I expect the Ravens will find more snaps for Jones this season.

Daniel Faalele is a top contender win a starting job at right tackle or guard during training camp. At 6-foot-8, 380 pounds, Faalele is a monster for any defender to tangle with, but the Australia native is still developing. Offensive Line Coach Joe D'Alessandris described Faalele as a "work in progress" and added that he "now is becoming more of a good football player, in a sense. He's starting to feel comfortable in his body and what he can do."

Beyond the three players you mentioned, third-year tight end Isaiah Likely is ready to be a featured weapon considering he was arguably the most impressive player on the field at minicamp and is coming off a sparkling second season. Fellow third-year tight end Charlie Kolar's role may also grow, and it's a pivotal year for cornerbacks Jalyn Armour-Davis and Damarion "Pepe" Williams.

Brown: Head Coach John Harbaugh said Humphrey, who didn't participate in team drills at mandatory minicamp but worked off to the side, is dealing with "nagging things" and should be ready for training camp.

I wouldn't stress much about Humphrey's health in mid-June. The Ravens' regular-season opener is still more than two months away.

I don't think the offseason practices that Humphrey has missed will hurt his performance in 2024. He's a Pro Bowl caliber player. He knows his role in the defense, which isn't likely to change drastically under new Defensive Coordinator Zach Orr.

Humphrey will turn 28 years old on July 8, still young enough to have several more stellar seasons. He only played in 10 games in 2023, but he played every game in 2022 and has been durable during his seven-year career.

I haven't spoken to him this offseason, but I think Humphrey is eager to show he's still an elite corner when healthy. I know he's as competitive as they come, and he's one of many Ravens starving to win a Super Bowl.

The Ravens are deep at corner after drafting Nate Wiggins and T.J. Tampa and re-signing Arthur Maulet. But l expect Humphrey to remain a major player in Baltimore's defense in 2024.

Mink: I don't think "Hard Knocks" will have any effect on the Ravens' mood. These days, players are very accustomed to having cameras around them. It doesn't faze them. Plus, I'm sure Harbaugh will be sure to make sure media time doesn't interfere with football time.

Part of the bonus of having "Hard Knocks" focused on the entire division instead of just one team is it means smaller crews at each site because they have to spread out. So I don't expect that it will be a massive daily sideshow at the Under Armour Performance Center.

The Ravens are going to be locked in either way down the final six weeks of the regular season and into the playoffs if they make it. That stretch includes AFC North games against the Steelers and Browns (regular-season finale) that could have massive stakes. The presence of "Hard Knocks" during those weeks could be more elevated, but players will simply comment on there being more people around, fulfil their media requests, and go about their business.

Brown: At least one undrafted rookie usually makes the initial 53. Several undrafted rookies have been impressive this offseason including wide receiver Qadir Ismail of Samford, safety Jordan Toles of Morgan State, and wide receiver Dayton Wade of Mississippi.

Former Maryland safety Beau Brade, who returned in mandatory minicamp after missing time during the offseason (ankle), is another talented undrafted rookie to watch. Brade could be in the mix as a backup safety and special teamer with an impressive training camp and preseason.

The Ravens have a history of finding undrafted rookies who become key performers, such as Justin Tucker, Patrick Ricard, Pierce, Orr, and Keaton Mitchell. It's too early to tell if any of this year's undrafted rookies will follow that path, but they'll be given an opportunity.

Related Content