Lamar Jackson’s return to practice lifts the Ravens

Lamar Jackson pronounced himself “ready for the season” after showing up for the team’s mandatory minicamp. After seeing the quarterback practice Tuesday, his teammates concur.

“I think everybody knows that Lamar, he’s what drives our team,” Ravens tight end Mark Andrews said Tuesday, via Jamison Hensley of ESPN. “The energy around him being here lifts everybody up.”

The Ravens hadn’t seen Jackson on a field since Dec. 29 when he tried to practice with a right ankle injury. He missed the final four games and then skipped the team’s entire voluntary offseason program before reporting Monday and practicing Tuesday.

“He’s the ultimate pro,” Ravens defensive end Calais Campbell said. “He prepares and handles his business the way you’re supposed to. Just being a young guy, he’s so mature. He understands how to do things the right way.”

Questions, though, remain about Jackson off the field. No one seems to know what is going on with him as he enters his fifth-year option that will pay him $23.016 million this season.

The Ravens are expected to use the franchise tag on him if they can’t reach a long-term deal by March 7.

That puts pressure on Jackson to have a better year than he did last year when he threw for 16 touchdowns and 13 interceptions in 12 games.