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Ravens' Isaiah Likely on Derrick Henry addition: 'You have to worry about everybody going the distance'

The signing of Derrick Henry headlined a relatively quiet offseason for the Baltimore Ravens, but the lone addition of a Hall of Fame-worthy running back figures to be the missing piece for an offense already loaded with talent.

It's why tight end Isaiah Likely foresees big problems for opposing teams trying to defend an "electric" Ravens offense.

"Not only do you have Lamar (Jackson) in the backfield, you have Derrick Henry in the backfield, where you also have to worry about our run game," Likely said Thursday on the "Up & Adams Show." "Then you have All-Pro Mark Andrews, where you obviously have to give credit where credit is due. Then you also have great receivers like Zay (Flowers) and (Rashod) Bateman and then also you have me. You have to worry about anybody at any point in time in the offense going the distance.

"When you play the Ravens, you have to worry about everybody going the distance."

Despite several key injuries, the Ravens powered toward the AFC's No. 1 seed with the NFL's top rushing offense (156.5 yards per game) in 2023, but failed to go the distance after a disappointing home loss to the eventual Super Bowl champion Chiefs in the AFC title game.

Henry would've been a useful asset in that one-score affair as Baltimore struggled to find any consistency in it's ground game. It forced Jackson to try to make it a successful one-man show, which may be the main reason the Ravens keyed in on taking the pressure off their star quarterback this offseason.

Jackson has led his team in rushing yards in each of the past five seasons, a remarkable span considering Baltimore's boasted the top rushing offense in three of those campaigns. Henry, who leads all active players with 9,502 rushing yards and 90 rushing touchdowns, seems to be the ideal fit for a team looking to get over the hump, and his presence alone might open things up for the rest of the offense.

Likely will be part of that mix. The 24-year-old blossomed in the wake of Andrews' knee injury last season and the Ravens' tight end duo should complicate things in the red zone with Henry's threat looming in the backfield.

"Really just being there when my number is called," Likely said of his role in 2024. "I showed that I also can be in the slot, out wide on myself, in-line tight end or in the backfield, really that gadget for the offense. I told myself, just be the chess piece of the offense, just make plays when plays aren't there to be made and then just show everyone that when the ball is in my hand, anything can happen."

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