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Ravens vs. Colts: 7 competitions to watch for

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NFL: Pro Hall of Fame Game-Chicago Bears at Baltimore Ravens Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Final rosters are due at 4:00 p.m. ET on September 1. Until that time, the Ravens will continue to judge and move players until they’ve decided upon their final set up. They get another big glimpse at their players in action tomorrow, against the Indianapolis Colts. For the fans, I’ve lined up seven different competitions worth watching.

Right Tackle

Both Orlando Brown Jr. and James Hurst are playing snaps with the first-team offense. Zeus Jr. has excelled in both preseason games, but the coaching staff has already said James is the man for the job. I urge all fans to watch the right tackle play from both, judging who is truly the better prospect.

Inside Linebacker

It looks as if Patrick Onwuasor is locked in as the starter beside C.J. Mosley, but Kenny Young is still playing rather well. On defense, watch for their instincts and break on the ball once they find where it is going. Both are playing fast and look poised to produce big-time plays on the inside.

Wide Receiver

Most of this competition is locked up. For me, I see the top four players name tags welded into the final 53, but there’s still a unique competition between Tim White, Janarion Grant and Breshad Perriman. I am confident Jordan Lasley makes this roster, so he isn’t really competing with the others, but Grant and White offer similar roles and Breshad is clinging onto the last few games. If Perriman gets more reps with the second-string defense I’ll suspect he’s being looked at as the sixth or seventh receiver, but the team still needs a return man. The Ravens did play Willie Snead IV in some return practices, so maybe they’re okay with White and Grant walking while keeping Perriman.

Center

Still feels like this one is unknown. Both Alex Lewis and Matt Skura are competing against one another for this job. I’m rather interested in seeing the Ravens push Lewis to center, move Hurst over to left guard and keeping Zeus Jr. at right tackle to build a bigger offensive line to protect Joe Flacco. We all know Hurst performs better at guard, Lewis is a bigger lineman than Skura, so he can handle the physical element better and Zeus Jr. is the best right tackle on the team in.

Running back

I posted about this earlier today, but it looks like Gus Edwards Jr. is the candidate to win the third tailback spot behind Alex Collins and Javorius Allen. If Kenneth Dixon plays today, we’ll see more of this competition, but until then, watch how Edwards plays. He’s a bigger back, which is something the Ravens usually carry on the roster.

Tight End

Only so many roster spots are available, and there are four players on the roster hoping they can land on the final two spots. Both Maxx Williams’ and Nick Boyle’s stocks are rising, but with Darren Waller’s return, it could spell trouble for one of them. There’s also Vince Mayle, who provides secure hands and good play on special teams. Unfortunately, Waller also offers special teams value, pushing Mayle out of the spotlight in that regard. The Ravens are clearly keeping Hayden Hurst and Mark Andrews, so focus on the previously mentioned tight ends and see if they can hold their blocks and also get open in space.

Defensive Line

Once again, a top-heavy position with most spots being claimed by the incumbents, but there’s depth to be needed and there’s competition with the second- and third-string players.

Zach Sieler has received great praise recently. His big frame and strength went on display against the Rams, too. There’s also Carl Davis, Chris Wormley and Bronson Kaufusi hoping to land on the roster. Watch for their push on defense, their pass rush technique and stopping the run.