Bateman was the Ravens’ top draft pick in 2021 and will now take over as the team’s top wideout, with Devin Duvernay, James Proche II and Tylan Wallace also stepping into bigger roles with Brown now in Arizona.
Bateman said when he saw the trade happen, he reached out to some of his teammates, including Humphrey and Proche, about stepping into the lead role of the wide receivers.
“I hit up James. I was like, ‘Bro, I’m going to need help leading this room,'” Bateman said. “Because Year 1 for me, I went through a lot dealing with an injury. So I’m like, ‘How do you really do this?’ Then I just watched how everybody else handled it and you’ve just got to do it. There’s really no talking or being about it. I think that’s where I get my leadership from.”
Bateman was having a strong offseason last year, but a training camp injury sent him to core muscle surgery and delayed his debut. He missed the entire preseason and first five games of the regular season.
“I’ve never felt like more of a complete receiver during that time before I got hurt,” he said. “It felt like I let my teammates down, I had let the Ravens organization down. Those guys drafted me and they were expected me to do those things. I like to live up to my expectations, no matter who it’s coming from.”