On Saturday, the Ravens ended practice with five linebackers absent, including Patrick Onwuasor, Chris Board (concussion), Kenny Young, Nicholas Grigsby and Michael Onuoha (wrist).
Twenty-four hours later, two have returned and one has been released with an injury settlement.
Ravens waived OLB Michael Onuoha with an injury settlement. Onuoha broke his wrist in preseason opener. Ravens need some healthy bodies to get through final 2 preseason games without playing guys they don’t want to play.— Jeff Zrebiec (@jeffzrebiec) August 18, 2019
Both Patrick Onwuasor and Kenny Young, who didn't practice Saturday, were on the field today. But the new absences were Miles Boykin, Shane Ray, Pernell McPhee and Marlon Humphrey.— Jeff Zrebiec (@jeffzrebiec) August 18, 2019
This is all positive news, especially with Peanut back on the field leading the defense. At the end of practice, defensive coordinator Don ‘Wink’ Martindale spoke on Onwuasor being the communicator on the field.
Martindale said Onwuasor has worn the speaker in his helmet throughout camp and that’s plan for regular season. But acknowledged that could change.— Jeff Zrebiec (@jeffzrebiec) August 18, 2019
While Harbaugh did mention yesterday how he didn’t think anything serious was affecting Young or Onwuasor, it’s still important for both of these players to stay on the field and get their reps in. Peanut is transitioning into the full-time Mike role, which calls for extensive practice as he navigates himself and ten others into position. Though the veteran presence of Earl Thomas III, Tony Jefferson, Brandon Williams and Jimmy Smith help ease the pressure as they know their checks and responsibilities, Peanut’s role requires this knowledge for the 2019 season.
Also, Young is a sophomore linebacker who is competing for starting time. I’ve noted he’s always standing around the coaches and waiting to jump in at a moment’s notice. He wants to play, badly. With Board’s unfortunate injury, this gives time for Young to gain reps with the starting unit and close the gap between himself and Board.