The Ravens' review: 2012 season
To keep you entertained during the 2013 NFL offseason, blogger and reporter Matt Vensel will go back and review the performance of each significant Ravens contributor during the 2012 season. He started with the team's free agents and recent retires and will break down a new Ravens player every weekday.
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Deonte Thompson, wide receiver( Gene Sweeney Jr., Baltimore Sun / August 15, 2012 )
GS: 0 | GP: 6 | Snaps: 145
Season in review: Thompson, an undrafted free agent from Florida, impressed during offseason workouts and backed it up with a strong training camp and preseason, earning him a spot on the 53-man roster. He started the season as the team's primary kickoff returner, but after a fumble in Week 5, he was replaced by Jacoby Jones (for Jones, the rest was history). Thompson appeared in just one game after that.
Signature moment: In a blowout win over the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 1, Thompson made his first NFL catch, hauling in a short pass from backup quarterback Tyrod Taylor and turning it into a 25-yard gain.
Stat that stands out: 25.9 -- yards per kickoff return for Thompson in his rookie season.
Pro Football Focus grade: +0.6 overall | +0.1 as a receiver | +0.5 miscellaneous | -1.9 on special teams.
Outlook for 2013 and beyond: After Thompson came out of nowhere to make the team last year, it sure sounds like the Ravens are high on Thompson, as both John Harbaugh and Steve Bisciotti name-dropped him at different points this offseason when talking about replacing Anquan Boldin in the slot. Thompson is one of a few young receivers who should continue to improve and also get more comfortable with quarterback Joe Flacco. His deep speed and explosiveness make him one of the most intriguing of the bunch.