Roquan Smith, Baltimore Ravens
#18 Roquan Smith of the Baltimore Ravens Bleacher Report/Twitter


  • Roquan Smith sees a big season coming for the Baltimore Ravens
  • The Ravens also acquired Odell Beckham Jr and Zay Flowers in the offseason
  • Smith is expected to continue anchoring the defense alongside Odafe Oweh and Patrick Queen

The Baltimore Ravens are making a case to be one of the NFL's best teams when the season officially begins with Week 1 action on September 10 and Roquan Smith wants to put the rest of the league on notice about the storm brewing in Maryland.

During a recent appearance on the Ravens' "The Lounge" podcast, Smith revisited the 2022 season which ended in disappointment after they were ousted by the Cincinnati Bengals in the Wild Card round.

The Ravens found themselves leading entering the first half thanks to the heroics of backup quarterback Tyler Huntley as Lamar Jackson was sidelined due to injury, but their efforts would be for naught after the Bengals defensive end took home a 98-yard fumble return touchdown leading to the 17-24 loss.

For Smith, that moment remains firmly etched, not just in his mind, but in the rest of the locker room.

"We want all the smoke, honestly. There's a lot of payback that we have [to give] out there. We'll get to it when we get to it, one week at a time," Smith declared.

Their first order of business entering the offseason was Jackson's long-standing contract stalemate.

While negotiations were completed later on, the Ravens sought to assure their franchise cornerstone first by bringing in wide receivers Nelson Agholor and Tarik Black to reinforce their depth.

However, they shocked the rest of the NFL landscape when they announced Odell Beckham Jr.'s one-year deal to further bolster the receiving group–a move that Beckham himself described as an exciting opportunity as he will get to play with Jackson.

Going a step beyond Beckham, the Ravens also selected Boston College receiver Zay Flowers with the No. 22 overall pick in the 2023 NFL draft which now gives them a three-headed wideout group featuring the rookie, Beckham and the talent-laden Rashod Bateman.

After being brought in via a midseason trade with the Chicago Bears, Smith made himself a major force on defense for a Ravens team that sorely needed it as he, Odafe Oweh and Patrick Queen formed a linebacker trio reminiscent of past Ravens greats Ray Lewis and Terrell Suggs.

Smith had the opportunity to speak with Lewis during the Pro Bowl and it appears that there is a budding partnership there that could unlock even more of his talent in the coming seasons.

"Never scared. Wasn't born scared, wasn't planning to die scared. I think most of the guys on the defense live the same way. People may fear us, [and] we want to strike that. At the end of the day, we're coming out to take your heads off," Smith later mentioned.

A revamped Ravens roster plus a new offensive coordinator in Todd Monken puts Baltimore in a great place to succeed in the season as they aim for a third Super Bowl victory.

Odell Beckham Jr., Baltimore Ravens
Newly signed Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (center) poses for a photo alongside head coach John Harbaugh (left) and general manager Eric DeCosta (right). Baltimore Ravens/YouTube Screenshot