Kyle Barber Reaction to Ravens signing WR Nelson Agholor
On Friday, the Ravens added their first outside free agent, agreeing to a deal with wide receiver Nelson Agholor. Many chimed in with their reaction to the move.
Last Word on Sports' Curtis Leung sees the addition as a step in the right direction.
"With a slightly smaller frame, Agholor is a solid route runner who is a good deep threat and can play in the slot," Leung wrote. "In his NFL career so far, Agholor's ability to remain relatively healthy is perhaps his biggest bonus. Both Bateman and Duvernay saw their seasons ended early in 2022 thanks to season-ending injuries. Agholor may be able to provide a bit more stability should the Ravens receivers suffer any injury woes in 2023."
Pats Pulpit's Bernd Buchmasser gave reaction to the news, sharing what the Patriots will miss with the departure of Agholor.
"The Patriots lose experience and depth," Buchmasser wrote. "By the end of the 2022 season, it was clear that New England viewed Agholor as an emergency option more than an integral member of its offensive operation. Nonetheless, his presence gave the team some experienced depth capable of stepping up when called upon."
A first-round pick in 2015, Agholor has major talent, but has had some hiccups with drops.
"Agholor has deep-threat ability but has struggled with ball security over his career, having dropped at least 10% of his catchable passes in four seasons, including last year, according to PFF," The Baltimore Banner's Jonas Shaffer wrote.
Even with Agholor on board, pundits are awaiting more moves to be made to address the position, including The Athletic's Jeff Zrebiec.
"Not much has changed here because the Ravens have only signed one outside free agent, wide receiver Nelson Agholor," Zrebiec wrote. "His addition, however, doesn't do much to diminish the team's need for a No. 1 or No. 2 wide receiver. The Ravens' top four receivers are Rashod Bateman, Devin Duvernay, Agholor and James Proche. The Ravens will almost certainly draft a wide receiver with one of their first couple of picks. They also still could use another productive veteran, whether it's via a trade or free-agent signing, or they'll start another season with concerns about an underwhelming receiving group."
Kyle Hamilton Looks Poised for the Pro Bowl in Year 2
In Kyle Hamilton's rookie season, he ranked No. 1 among NFL safeties in overall defense grade for Pro Football Focus and became a fixture of the Ravens defense.
After the early moves of the offseason, Bleacher Report's Maurice Moton sees the sophomore safety as a breakout star for 2023.
"Because of Hamilton's three-down playmaking ability, he has Pro Bowl potential going into his second term," Moton wrote.
The opportunity will be there for the taking, too, after the Ravens traded safety Chuck Clark to the New York Jets. This leaves prime snaps to fill, and Moton expects Hamilton rise to the task.
"Next season, Hamilton will likely play a more traditional role at safety alongside Marcus Williams, though we should expect defensive coordinator Mike Macdonald to continue tapping into the second-year defensive back's versatility," Moton wrote. "As a rookie, mainly in a reserve role, Hamilton registered 62 tackles, four for loss, two sacks, five pass breakups and a forced fumble. He can make plays all over the field on any given down, which should result in an expanded role, playing 90-plus percent of the defensive snaps."
Hiring of Todd Monken Called Ravens' "Smartest Offseason Decision"
It's been a busy offseason around the NFL, with numerous coaching changes, trades and a whirlwind of free agency.
Now a couple weeks into the new league year, Bleacher Report's Kristopher Knox named each NFL team's smartest offseason decision. For the Ravens, Knox noted the hiring of Offensive Coordinator Todd Monken.
"Baltimore's decision to hire Todd Monken as its new offensive coordinator is a clear positive," Knox wrote. "Monken is fresh off of back-to-back national titles as Georgia's offensive coordinator, and he has a history of sparking potent passing offenses. With the 2018 Tampa Bay Buccaneers, his offense ranked first in overall passing yards and second in yards per attempt (7.7). Monken should be able to improve a Ravens passing attack that ranked 28th in yards and 21st in yards per attempt (5.8) this past season. By bringing more balance to the offense, the Ravens should be more formidable..."