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Kyle Juszczyk Envisions Backfield Versatility

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The Ravens' rookie fullback thinks he and teammate Vonta Leach can add some versatility to Baltimore's backfield.

Kyle Juszczyk believes there will be roles for both himself and Vonta Leach.
Kyle Juszczyk believes there will be roles for both himself and Vonta Leach.

Not many NFL teams carry two fullbacks.

But that will be Baltimore's plan this season, with Vonta Leach and Kyle Juszczyk on the roster.

Leach is a proven veteran with the reputation as the best lead-blocker in the NFL. Juszczyk is more of an H-back that can catch passes out of the backfield or line up as a tight end.

The differing styles could offer an element that makes Baltimore's offense a bit tricky to play against.

"It adds a whole other dimension, another thing people have to gameplan for," Juszczyk said.

Juszczyk is still learning the offense and the nuances that come with being a lead blocker. He admitted there is a learning curve to the position at this level, and that he had to make sure you're mentally prepared each time you take the field.

"There are no weak guys," Juszczyk said. "There are no scout team college guys out there. Everybody brings it. You really can't relax when you're in there. It's the definition of playing to the whistle."

Juszczyk will have a chance to learn from Leach, who said he should be back up to speed with the offense in a week. After the organization released him earlier this offseason, Leach signed a two-year deal with Baltimore on Monday.

"It felt good just to get out there and be back around some of the guys -- just get back to football," Leach said. "It’s been a long offseason for myself, so just for me to get back out here and put on the pads and knock some of the dust off, some of the rust off -- it felt pretty good."

Juszczyk, drafted in the fourth round out of Harvard, said he's paying close attention to fine tuning his technique. He's gained some experience going against outside linebackers Terrell Suggs and Elvis Dumervil, saying he's not sure there are two better outside linebackers in the NFL.

Like any young player, Juszczyk would love the opportunity to start early. But as it stands, the rookie said he believes both fullbacks will be able to contribute in different ways this season.

"I felt like Vonta coming back is good for this team in the fact that Vonta is a great player, a great blocker," Juszczyk said. "He's going to help the running game a lot. For myself, it's someone I can learn from. As far as having two fullbacks, I think we're two different players. We can find roles for both of us."

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