Derrick Henry And the Ravens Are a Perfect Fit

Jacksonville Jaguars v Houston Texans
Jacksonville Jaguars v Houston Texans / Wesley Hitt/GettyImages

Derrick Henry is off the board. On Tuesday, the two-time All-Pro running back signed a two-year deal with the Baltimore Ravens. On paper, it's a perfect fit.

While the 30-year-old is certainly not the dominant force he was in 2020 when he ran for 2,047 yards, Henry remains one of the NFL's most consistent backs. A 6-foot-3, 250-pound, helmeted dump truck, the longtime Tennessee Titans back rushed for 1,167 yards and 12 touchdowns in 2023 while leading the league in carries (280). He'll be a significant boost for the Ravens' run-heavy attack. Putting the punishing Henry on a Ravens team that knows how to maximize its running backs is a scary thought.

In 2023, the Ravens were led in rushing by quarterback Lamar Jackson (821 yards). It was a familiar situation, as Jackson has been Baltimore's leading rusher in each of the past five seasons. A rotating group of backs has supplemented him, but he hasn't had a true No. 1 rusher next to him since Mark Ingram broke the 1,000-yard barrier in 2019. Henry changes that equation.

The Ravens led the NFL in rushing last season, finishing nearly 300 yards above the second place Chicago Bears. And that was without a true No. 1 back. Henry solves that problem immediately.

Lamar Jackson is coming off an MVP season and now has someone to take some of the rushing load off his shoulders. Baltimore managed to keep Justin Madubuike but has lost several key defensive pieces like Geno Stone, Ronald Darby and Patrick Queen. The offense will likely have to be better next season to compensate for those losses. Surrounding Jackson will more help will be key. The return of tight end Mark Andrews and the addition of Henry should be a big boost.

Henry clearly believes a move to the Ravens will be what's best for his career. He took a two-year deal worth $16 million that only contains $9 million in guaranteed money. It would seem he's ready to chase a ring in Baltimore and was willing to take less money to do so. It's a great fit for everyone involved.