Each NFL season, every team has a player that bears a little added attention. So which performer could turn the corner for the Baltimore Ravens in ’17?
Welcome to yet another 32-team series from End Zone Score. In recent months, we took the time to look at each club’s best offseason addition. We even dabbled into some pertinent and historical numbers.
Every NFL season features players that come into their own after a slow start to their careers. It’s tough to tell when each performer’s coming-put party will take place. Some are immediate successes. Others take longer due to numerous circumstances, but they prove to be worth the wait. Here we will try and pinpoint a player from each team in the league that we feel is on the verge of putting it altogether.
TE Maxx Williams
We are going to take a big leap on a player that was a second-round draft choice in 2015 and is looking to bounce back after knee surgery. Maxx Williams played four games for the Baltimore Ravens this past season and didn’t catch a pass before being sidelined for the remainder of the year. Now he’s on the comeback trail following surgery.
“Who wants to sit out a whole season? I’m ready to get back,” said the 23-year-old pro to Garrett Downing of BaltimoreRavens.com in late May. “The positive is that I don’t have to worry about (the knee) anymore because we took care of it. But it sucks right now watching them practice and not being able to.”
As a rookie, Williams played in 14 games and made seven starts. He caught 32 passes for 268 yards and one touchdown. Now he looks to rebound at a position where the team could use some help. Talented tight end Dennis Pitta and the team and the franchise parted ways this offseason. The resilient performer was again bitten by the injury bug. A reoccurring hip problem has likely cost him his pro career. This past season, he made an amazing turnaround by leading the team with 86 receptions.
One year after enjoying a career campaign with the New Orleans Saints, Ben Watson joined the Ravens as a free agent. But he wound up missing all of 2016 and like Williams, is also looking for a big-time comeback. The Ravens still have three-year pro Crockett Gillmore, as well as 2015 fifth-round pick Nick Boyle. But Darren Waller will miss this season due to a one-year NFL suspension.
The Baltimore Ravens missed the playoffs this past season after opening the year at 3-0. John Harbaugh’s team is looking to bounce back following a disappointing finish. And tight end Maxx Williams is also looking to rebound as well. It won’t be easy and some feel the odds are long. But we’ll give him the strong benefit of the doubt.