With the uncertainty of the situation at wide receiver for the Baltimore Ravens continuing to grow as training camp wears on, the team reached into its past to help bolster the struggling unit.
The Ravens announced they have signed receiver Brandon Stokley to a one-year deal and will practice in front of fans this evening at the team’s open practice at M&T Bank Stadium.
Stokley, 37, won a championship with Baltimore in 2000 before leaving the team via free agency after the 2002 season. He played mainly as a slot receiver for head coach Brian Billick and will reprise that role again as the crop of young receivers this time around, namely Tandon Doss, Deonte Thompson and David Reed deal with inconsistency and injuries.
The 14-year veteran brings a toughness to the role, though he stands at just 5’11″, 200 pounds. But he’s a well-needed replacement because of his ability to stretch the field at times if needed, find soft spots in zones to get tough third down yardage and the hands to catch anything thrown at him. Its the solid possession receiver the Ravens lack at this current time.
Last season in Denver, Stokley caught 45 passes for 544 yards and five touchdowns. In his career, Stokley has 384 career receptions for 5,224 yards and 39 touchdowns.
The injury history throughout his career does give some pause for concern but if he can be effective down the seam for the Ravens – something they had in Anquan Boldin – this could be a very productive, short-term signing for the Ravens.
Matt Lund is a contributor for BaltimoreSportsReport.com and co-host of the BSR Podcast. You can follow him on Twitter @MattCLund.