The Ravens continued tinkering with their 90-man roster Tuesday by signing one of the most prominent tryout players from their rookie camp earlier this month.
After catching 15 passes for 246 yards for Division II Missouri Western last season, wide receiver Joe Horn Jr. made a strong enough impression to be signed to the 90-man roster. Horn played with Ravens right tackle Orlando Brown Jr. in high school in Georgia and is the son of former New Orleans wide receiver Joe Horn, who made four Pro Bowls and played 12 seasons in the NFL.
“His son looks like him — quick, fast, real good hands, [and strong] in and out of breaks,” head coach John Harbaugh said during rookie camp. “You can tell he’s worked with his dad a lot on technique. I thought he just looked excellent.”
The younger Horn, who is listed at 5-foot-10 and 185 pounds, was the latest notable name to try out during Baltimore’s rookie camp in recent years as Jerry Rice Jr. and Mike Flacco, younger brother of Joe and former Orioles prospect, participated in past rookie camps and weren’t signed. The former Saints receiver broke the news about his son on Twitter, but it remains to be seen whether he took the call on a flip phone.
Proud of my son for officially signing a professional contract. I don’t give a damn if it was a 1 day 2 months whatever .He’s officially a Raven in my heart. Congrats son😭😭✊🏾 pic.twitter.com/OQvq1OjDYE
To make room on the 90-man roster, the Ravens waived linebacker Ejuan Price. Those moves came a day after Baltimore signed former Baylor quarterback Jalan McClendon and former Texas guard Patrick Vahe, who also tried out during rookie camp.
With the Ravens completing their rookie camp this past weekend, I’ve offered a dozen thoughts, each in 50 words or less:
1. Marquise Brown is studying the playbook, but not having the first-round pick on the field took away some luster from rookie camp. He’ll still have extensive summer reps, but overcoming the learning curve at wide receiver on the heels of the foot injury presents a challenge that shouldn’t be dismissed.
2. Miles Boykin revealed he worked out with Brown prior to the combine and the two roomed together during rookie camp. History says Baltimore should be excited if just one of them makes a real impact, but it’s exciting having two young talents with such upside at the receiver position.
3. Pro Football Focus tagged Boykin with only three drops on 62 catchable targets last season, and he credited the catching improvement to the health of his fingers. The 6-foot-4 wideout said he dealt with broken fingers in each of his first two collegiate seasons.
4. It always strikes me how enjoyable rookie camp must be for John Harbaugh and the coaching staff working with so many players who won’t wear a Ravens uniform again beyond that weekend. Harbaugh coaching vise technique on punt return to unknowns had to take him back to his roots.
5. From Joe Flacco’s younger brother to Jerry Rice Jr., rookie camp has brought interesting tryout names to Owings Mills over the years with wide receiver Joe Horn Jr. joining that list this spring. The Missouri Western product drew Harbaugh’s praise, but there were no flip-phone celebrations to be found.
6. Trace McSorley garnered more attention, but former Baylor quarterback Jalan McClendon threw some impressive passes during Saturday’s workout open to reporters. You’d expect the Ravens to add a fourth quarterback to the 90-man offseason roster, whether it’s McClendon or someone else.
7. The most notable of the Ravens’ rookie free-agent signings, defensive tackle Gerald Willis limped off the field Saturday before later deeming himself OK on social media. The Miami product and younger brother of Pro Bowl safety Landon Collins has potential if the off-field issues are behind him.
8. Otaro Alaka, E.J. Ejiya, and Silas Stewart were just getting their feet wet, but Baltimore has to hope one will be the latest rookie free agent to stick as an inside linebacker. Former Raven and assistant coach Zach Orr was among those watching closely this past weekend.
9. Beginning Tuesday afternoon, teams are permitted to sign unrestricted free agents without it counting against the compensatory pick formula. As we’ve noted more than once, the cap space is there for Eric DeCosta to make another notable signing or two.
10. Iman Marshall expressed infectious enthusiasm answering questions Friday, but I didn’t know whether to be impressed or offended that he didn’t return to the theater to finish watching “Avengers: Endgame” upon receiving the call that he’d been drafted. I guess that’s why I never made it to the NFL.
11. Haloti Ngata and his family visited the team facility Saturday with the recently-retired five-time Pro Bowl defensive tackle and Super Bowl XLVII champion taking some time to chat with rookies. The next stop for the 35-year-old should be the Ravens Ring of Honor this fall.