Dean took the starting role the Eagles had in store for him in Week 1, but a foot injury interrupted his second NFL campaign. The 22-year-old was poised to return ahead of Sunday’s game by returning to practice earlier this week, though, and a first-team role is expected to await him upon suiting up. Dean taking on a heavy workload will relegate Nicholas Morrow (who was promoted from the practice squad) to backup duty despite the latter’s strong performances so far.
Seattle has seen fellow corners Devon Witherspoonand Riq Woolenenjoy considerable success, but the team’s secondary will be shorthanded without Bryant. The latter will miss at least the next four weeks as a result of the IR move as he recovers from a toe injury. The 2022 fourth-rounder, who has seen his defensive snap share jump from 65% to 77% this year, has not played since Week 2.
Mitchell could be a key piece back for Baltimore in the offensive backfield. After the season loss of running back J.K Dobbins, the Ravens have been operating with a committee that includes Gus Edwards, Justice Hill, Melvin Gordon, and Kenyan Drake. While just an undrafted rookie, Mitchell could immediately relieve the need for the use of Gordon or Drake off the practice squad. The East Carolina product flashed serious potential in the preseason and led the FBS last year with 54 runs of 10 or more yards.
Denver will certainly be hoping to add Browning back to its ailing defense soon. Especially with Randy Gregory finding himself off the roster today, Browning’s pass-rushing ability could be just what the team needs to get its defense back on track.
With options like Kareem Hunt and Leonard Fournette in free agency and a player like Jonathan Taylor reportedly available via trade, no one would blame Harbaugh and company for bringing in an experienced starter to tote the rock. Instead, the Ravens feel confident in the options they have in-house to take over with Harbaugh even indicating that they will be operating with a committee in the backfield.
When Dobbins exited Sunday’s game, fifth-year backup Justice Hill stepped in and immediately scored a touchdown, his first since the 2019 season. While he later scored a second touchdown, matching his career-high for a season, Hill only amassed nine yards on eight carries. Veteran backup rusher Gus Edwards, who has filled in as a starter at times in his career, was a bit more productive with his eight carries, racking up 32 yards.
Adding veterans didn’t quite deliver the desired result two years ago when Dobbins, Edwards, and Hill all missed the 2021 season with season-ending injuries before the year even began. That year, Baltimore turned to a committee featuring veteran backs like Devonta Freeman, Latavius Murray, and Le’Veon Bell in conjunction with Ty’Son Williams. Freeman and Murray each reached 500 rushing yards and delivered six scores apiece, but overall, the running game was dependent on quarterback Lamar Jackson.
Still, the Ravens added veteran rusherMelvin Gordon in the offseason, ultimately cutting him and signing him to the practice squad before the regular season. Gordon seems like an obvious callup to help carry the load without Dobbins. The Ravens also saw some impressive preseason performances from undrafted rookies Keaton Mitchell and Owen Wright, landing both on the team’s roster in some capacity to start the year. Mitchell currently resides on injured reserve himself, so he’s unable to contribute at this time. Wright, though, landed on the practice squad and may also hear his number called up to the active roster this season.
Dobbins is now expected to undergo surgery to repair his Achilles tendon this Friday, according to Tom Pelissero of NFL Network. Pelissero points out that Rams running back Cam Akers recovered from a similar surgery in less than six months two years ago. Dobbins will be aiming for a similar timeline, bringing him back shortly after the start of the 2024 league year.
In other injury news, Harbaugh confirmed that starting free safety Marcus Williams “will be out for a while” after suffering a pectoral muscle injury, according to Ravens editorial director Ryan Mink. Williams missed seven games in his Baltimore debut last year and will be forced to miss more in 2023, but the team is holding out hope that he will not be out for the season. He’ll be forced to make a decision soon on whether or not he will undergo surgery, as well.
Starting left tackle Ronnie Stanley and center Tyler Linderbaum suffered a sprained knee and ankle, respectively, forcing them both to leave the game early, as well. Both players are reportedly “week-to-week” but could miss the trip to Cincinnati this Sunday. Versatile sixth-man Patrick Mekari stepped in for Stanley yesterday and is an easy choice to start as an injury replacement as he’s done so often in the past. Offseason addition and practice squad callup Sam Mustipher filled in at center and will likely continue to do so, if needed.
The team will certainly hope that they won’t need to rely on Mekari and Mustipher for too long, and though they are clearly missing many bodies for the upcoming matchup with their division-rival, they’ll hope to get some back, too. Both cornerback Marlon Humphrey and tight end Mark Andrews will have a chance to play this weekend. There’s still work to be done, but things have been looking up recently for both players.
The Ravens brought back a trio of veterans to their 53-man roster. Brent Urban is probably destined for the biggest role, with the veteran lineman serving as the top backup to Broderick Washington at defensive end. Urban got into 16 games for Baltimore last season, collecting 21 tackles and one sack. Veteran QB Josh Johnson will slide behind Lamar Jackson and Tyler Huntley on the depth chart, and Kevon Seymour will continue his role as a key special teamer.
The Cardinals are temporarily losing some production with offensive lineman Dennis Daley and linebacker Myjai Sanders being placed on IR. Daley joined the Cardinals on a two-year deal this offseason after starting 15 of his 17 appearances for the Titans in 2022. Sanders had a productive rookie campaign, with the third-round pick collecting 23 tackles, three sacks, and one forced fumble.
Julian Okwara has turned into a productive pass-rushing option in Detroit. The former third-round pick has collected seven sacks over the past two seasons, but he’ll now be sidelined for the start of the season while recovering from a knee injury suffered during in the preseason finale.
The Ravens did a bit of work in the days leading up to the roster cut deadline, including the announced release of veteran running back Melvin Gordon. Still, there was a bit of work left to be done today. Here’s the remaining moves Baltimore made in order to get down to 53 players:
The most surprising moves here come at cornerback. Especially with the recent injury trouble facing star corner Marlon Humphrey, the Ravens choice to not only cut two reliable backups in Seymour and Worley but also to waive the fifth-round rookie draft pick Kelly is shocking. The team did reinforce with several free agent veterans like Rock Ya-Sin, Ronald Darby, and Arthur Maulet, and they’re hoping to see strong seasons from second year cornerbacks Damarion Williams and Jalyn Armour-Davis, both of whom were limited in their rookie seasons due to injury. Look for them to attempt to retain Seymour and Worley on the practice squad. Kelly will have to clear waivers in order to return, a tough ask for a fifth-round talent. Williams is expected to be placed on injured reserve following the deadline, opening a door for Worley or Seymour to return to the active roster.
Brown and Johnson put forth valiant efforts throughout the preseason, essentially allowing starting quarterback Lamar Jackson and primary backup Tyler Huntley to escape the preseason without really being touched. Unfortunately, neither made a strong enough case to remain on the regular season roster. Brown is surely a candidate to return to the practice squad, if he clears waivers.
Baltimore’s tradition of scouting undrafted talent continued this year as the team saw two free agent rookies make the initial 53-man roster. Former East Carolina running back Keaton Mitchell gave some strong impressions that helped him beat out Gordon and fellow undrafted signee Wright. Malik Hamm, Lafayette’s all-time sack leader, makes the team behind as of yet unproven pass rushers Odafe Oweh and David Ojabo, veteran Jadeveon Clowney, and fellow rookie Tavius Robinson, a fourth-round pick out of Ole Miss.
The Ravens have become the second AFC North team to announce their class of undrafted free agents. After having a unusually low six picks in the draft, Baltimore has a large contingent of UDFAs this year. Here is the full list:
The last time the Ravens drafted a quarterback who played at Delaware was Joe Flaccoin 2008. The latter helped lead the team to a Super Bowl title, but the same will certainly not be expected of Henderson, who had a career-best 3,231 passing yards and 32 touchdowns last season. The Ravens’ backup and third-string signal-callers (Tyler Huntleyand Anthony Brown) both joined the team as UDFAs, so Henderson could have a path to at least a practice squad spot.
Mitchell – the son of former Ravens safety Anthony Mitchell – had a highly productive college career. He saw his yards per carry mark increase in each of his three seasons, and his 7.2 mark in 2022 led the AAC. The 5-9, 188-pounder recorded 1,704 scrimmage yards and 15 total touchdowns last season, but the each of the Ravens’ top three running backs from 2022 are on the books for the coming campaign. That should limit Mitchell’s opportunities to make the 53-man roster.
Demus showed potential at times during his Maryland career, but also missed action due to injuries. His best season came in 2019 (41 catches, 625 yards, six touchdowns), and he totaled 2,008 yards and 14 scores overall. The Ravens have made a number of high-profile moves at the WR position this offseason, but a back-of-the-roster spot could be available if Demus (or Ryan) stand out during the summer.