After much anticipation and speculation, the Ravens’ 53-man roster is officially finalized after a slew of player cuts between Friday and Saturday. Here’s a position-by-position breakdown of the team’s roster ahead of the regular season.
Lamar Jackson, Robert Griffin III, Trace McSorley
Breakdown: McSorley’s convincing preseason performance was evidently enough to earn him a spot on the roster. It’ll be interesting to see if the Ravens utilize him on special teams or in gadget formations throughout the year. The team is clearly confident that RGIII will be healthy and active for Week 1.
Running Back (3)
Mark Ingram, Gus Edwards, Justice Hill
The wildcard here was Kenneth Dixon, who many speculated could either make the roster, be traded, or get released. Neither of these scenarios came to fruition, though, as instead he was placed on injured reserve. Dixon’s season is over before it started and so too could be his tenure in Baltimore, as the fourth-year RB is set to hit free agency following this year. The Ravens have a talented, versatile trio between Mark Ingram, Gus Edwards, and Justice Hill.
Offensive Line (9)
Marshal Yanda, Ronnie Stanley, Matt Skura, James Hurst, Orlando Brown Jr., Bradley Bozeman, Patrick Mekari, Ben Powers, Greg Senat
Eric DeCosta and company opted to keep a good amount of offensive lineman, which makes sense after trading away Alex Lewis and Jermaine Eluemunor. UDFA Patrick Mekari’s strong showing in recent weeks, on top of his versatility, earned him a spot on the roster. Greg Senat is the most surprising name of the bunch,but he’s one of the few natural tackles on the team and possesses some untapped upside. The starting LG job is still up in the air but the Ravens are evidently confident in either Hurst, Powers, Mekari, or Bozeman.
Tight End (3)
Mark Andrews, Hayden Hurst, Nick Boyle
No surprises here. One of the most talented tight end groups in the league remains intact, while the team released Cole Herdman and Charles Scarff. Look for one of these guys, if not both, to land on the practice squad.
Wide Receiver (6)
Marquise Brown, Miles Boykin, Chris Moore, Willie Snead IV, Jaleel Scott, Seth Roberts
The first four names listed above were roster locks, but uncertainty lied in the final two receiver spots. Second-year man Jaleel Scott rightfully made the 53-man roster after an impressive body of work throughout OTA’s, training camp, and preseason. Scott’s main contributions this season may come on special teams, but he’s certainly a big-play threat and redzone target. The additional WR spot was won by Seth Roberts, who some presumed could be bumped out in favor of Michael Floyd. Roberts’ injury limited him almost all preseason but his blocking ability is superior to Floyd’s.
Defensive Line (5)
Brandon Williams, Michael Pierce, Patrick Ricard, Chris Wormley, Daylon Mack
Perhaps the biggest surprise of the weekend was the team’s decision to release Willie Henry on friday night. Henry was projected to have a big role on the defensive line this season given his ability to provide interior pass-rushing. Patrick Ricard’s dominant preseason showing evidently made Henry expendable, though, and the Ravens are confident in rookie Daylon Mack providing some of Henry’s production. Neither Zach Sieler or UDFA Gerald Willis III made the team, which some thought would come to fruition following Henry’s release. The team’s top three d-lineman remain intact: Pierce, Williams, and Wormley.
Patrick Onwuasor, Kenny Young, Chris Board, Otara Alaka, Matthew Judon, Tim Williams, Pernell McPhee, Tyus Bowser, Jaylon Ferguson
Along with Patrick Mekari, rookie Otara Alaka will continue the team’s streak of UDFA making the 53-man roster. Alaka will play a special teams role and provide depth behind Patrick Onwuasor, Kenny Young, and Chris Board. Anthony Levine Sr. is also going to play linebacker in nickel packages. At outside linebacker, former first-round pick Shane Ray was released on Friday after no-showing throughout the preseason. Matthew Judon and Pernell McPhee are entrenched as the starters with youngsters Jaylon Ferguson, Tim Williams, and Tyus Bowser set to provide much-needed pass-rushing help.
Defensive Back (12)
Tony Jefferson, Earl Thomas, Chuck Clark, DeShon Elliott, Anthony Levine Sr., Marlon Humphrey, Jimmy Smith, Brandon Carr, Anthony Averett, Cyrus Jones, Justin Bethel, Iman Marshall
The Ravens secondary is deep and talented. Justin Bethel and rookie Iman Marshall are the only surprises here. Marshall was a prime candidate for IR given his injury status over the past several weeks, but the decision to put him on the 53-man roster suggests he’ll be ready to go next Sunday. Justin Bethel was signed earlier this offseason and managed to beat out Brynden Trawick and Maurice Canaday for the final cornerback spot. Bethel’s main value is on special teams, like Cyrus Jones. Jones, however, has shown potential as a slot cornerback and could end up playing a lot of snaps with Tavon Young on IR. Jones is also the team’s primary return man.
Special Teams (3)
Justin Tucker, Sam Koch, Morgan Cox
The “wolfpack” isn’t going anywhere.