OWINGS MILLS, Md. — Ravens players and coaches are taking notice. Lamar has definitely returned.
"When he’s not here you kind of forget what it feels like and then he shows up and you are like, ‘Yo, that’s Lamar Jackson back out here’," said Ravens wide receivers coach Tee Martin. "He came in ready. Man, the ball shot out of his hands and the first thing the wideouts were like, ‘It got on me fast’."
Receiver Devin Duvernay is readjusting to QB1 after Jackson missed all of voluntary offseason work.
"A lot of zip on the ball, strong arm. Just been getting used to that," said Duvernay about Jackson. "Happy to see him back."
Plenty of Ravens fans will be happy to hear the team is emphasizing the deep ball this week at mandatory minicamp. Martin said head coach John Harbaugh wants more downfield passing. That should be good for a burner like Duvernay.
"Of course I think I can stretch the field. Me and [Rashod Bateman] for sure stretch the plays, make plays down the field," he said.
Duvernay is entering his third NFL season and Rashod Bateman is entering his second. They are now the Ravens' top two wideouts after the trade of Marquise Brown. Management is showing faith in Duvernay’s ability after an all-pro year as a punt returner and it is showing faith in an unproven, young receiver group.
"The guys do have a chip on their shoulder and they want to go out and prove they are ready for their opportunity," said Martin.
Thursday brings the final practice of minicamp. Following the session Jackson is scheduled to answer questions for the first time since January.