After a revitalizing season that earned him a two-year commitment from the Ravens, Ben Watson now faces an uncertain future. The 35-year-old tight end tore his Achilles’ tendon on Saturday night, and the Ravens announced (on Twitter) he will be out for the remainder of the season.
Watson signed a two-year, $7MM deal with the Ravens in March, with $3MM in full guarantees. He’s set to earn $4MM this season. Watson will turn 36 in December and will now be facing the prospect of potentially making a comeback for a 14th season in 2017 on the heels of one of toughest injuries from which to recover.
A former Patriots, Browns and Saints starter, Watson enjoyed his finest statistical season at age 34 last season, catching 74 passes for 825 yards and eight touchdowns — all career highs — and added to the Ravens’ deep, yet muddled tight end corps.
Baltimore still has 2015 second-rounder Maxx Williams, along with 2014 third-rounder Crockett Gillmore. Dennis Pitta remains the Ravens’ highest-paid tight end, but while he was finally cleared to return after the career-threatening hip injury, the 31-year-old is out due to a broken finger sustained in a training camp fight. Pitta
played just seven games in the past three seasons.
So, the Ravens might have the depth to withstand this. But their 2016 passing game — which will attempt to pick up the pieces after the team lost most of its starting skill-position talent in 2015 — will absorb a hit as a result of Watson’s absence.
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