The Ravens are a perfect 4-0! Ok, it’s preseason. But it’s better to be 4-0 than to be 0-4. 0-4 leaves you with a lot of questions left to answer. When you go 4-0 in the preseason, you show one thing. You likely have more depth than the other team. Better players on the second and third teams that get the most playing time. With some questions about depth at certain positions, and final cuts coming up, here’s who I believe will make the cut. Some guys needed this final game to show the coaches they belong.
What are your thoughts on the roster? Discuss this topic on our message board.
QB: Joe Flacco, Tyrod Taylor
Cut: Keith Wenning
Coach Harbaugh said earlier in the week that if the third QB is one of the 53 best players on the roster, he would make the team. If he’s not, he won’t. Wenning isn’t, and he shouldn’t. Hats off to Tyrod Taylor who didn’t look terrible this preseason. But nothing near a QB controversy in Baltimore.
RB: Bernard Pierce, Lorenzo Taliaferro, Justin Forsett
SSPD: Ray Rice (Two games)
Cut: Fitzgerald Touissaint
No surprises here. Question is do the Ravens carry four RBs when Rice returns? Usually they carry three, but Forsett can be an asset on special teams. Maybe call it carrying three running backs and a special teamer that can run the ball if need be.
FB: Kyle Juszczyk
TE: Dennis Pitta, Owen Daniels, Crockett Gillmore
Cut: Phillip Supernaw, Nathan Overbay
Supernaw and Overbay didn’t show us anything outstanding in their looks, although Overbay had a few catches in the last game. Interested who gets to start opposite Pitta in ten days. Will Daniels still be bothered by sore legs and allow the rookie in Gillmore a chance to earn more playing time?
WR: Steve Smith Sr., Torrey Smith, Jacoby Jones, Marlon Brown, Michael Campanaro, Deonte Thompson
Cut: Kamar Aiken, Jeremy Butler, Jace Davis
Deonte Thompson scored three times this preseason. It would be hard to not place him on the roster, and if cut, he won’t make it through to the practice squad with his performance. The broadcast team alluded to a possible trade scenario where they move Thompson to acquire a cornerback. If that’s the case, Aiken could be the next man up. The top four here are locks, and Campanaro impressed with his return skills. Butler and Davis just didn’t do enough. Butler made a nice grab, but offensive PI negated that. Aiken could make it through to the practice squad, and would be ready to step in if Thompson is moved, or gets hurt.
T: Eugene Monroe, Rick Wagner, Jah Reid
Cut: James Hurst, Parker Graham
Hurst and Graham got extensive looks in the last two preseason games, but Harbaugh has anointed Reid a spot on the team already. The Ravens typically carry three tackles, three guards, two centers. In a situation where Reid isn’t cleared to play with lingering concussion symptoms, I would place Hurst over Graham on the pecking order. Guard, Will Rackley was placed on IR from a concussion. Can’t rule out if Reid would be placed on the PUP list and miss six games.
G: Marshal Yanda, Kelechi Osemele, John Urschel
Cut: Ryan Jensen, A.Q. Shipley
Jensen didn’t help his cause when he committed a holding penalty, negating a long run in the red zone by Fitzgerald Touissaint. The run could have set up a nice shot at a TD, instead the Ravens settled for the fourth Justin Tucker FG on the night. Another one later on negated a nice catch and run for Campanaro. He left the field with an apparent injury midway throught he fourth quarter. The only thing Jensen has going for him is the ability to play all three positions on the line. Consider him another option if Reid isn’t ready for week 1. Shipley was poor at guard last year, and hasn’t shown well thus far.
C: Jeremy Zuttah, Gino Gradkowski
Cut: Reggie Stephens
Stephens was a longshot to make the squad, no surprise here.
NT: Brandon Williams
He’s been a stud in the preseason. Love to see it transition to the regular season. If he can be the big body that allows Haloti Ngata, Chris Canty, and Terrell Suggs to face one-on-one matchups, the defense is in for a nice season.
DT: Haloti Ngata, Timmy Jernigan, Derrick Hopkins
PUP: Terrance Cody
Cut: Jamie Meder, Levi Brown, A.J. Patiali’i
Cody has yet to see the practice field. That PUP tag may follow him to the regular season where he’ll be out for at least six games. The group of Hopkins, Meder, Brown, and Patiali’I hasn’t shown us much in games (Meder may have a tackle for loss, IIRC) but Hopkins plays with the second teamers, the other guys don’t. He’s got the leg up with Cody likely out, and the two season ending injuries to Kapron Lewis-Moore and Brent Urban.
DE: Chris Canty, Deangelo Tyson
Check. The Ravens normally carry six men in the front three of the 3-4 set. Looks like Williams, Ngata, Canty, Jernigan, Tyson, Hopkins.
ILB: Daryl Smith, C.J. Mosley, Arthur Brown, Josh Bynes, Albert McClellan
Cut: Zachary Orr
Orr was a longshot, no surprise. Mosley moves ahead of Brown and becomes a starter week 1. McClellan was signed to a two year extension for his special teams expertise.
OLB: Terrell Suggs, Courtney Upshaw, Elvis Dumervil, Pernell McPhee, John Simon
Cut: D.J. Roberts
Simon was on the bubble, and may have played his way onto the club with his extended look in the final game. His name was called often as he seemed to be a magnet to the ball carrier. We heard him called more than Roberts. That might be enough, plus he picked up a sack for good measure late in the fourth quarter.
CB: Lardarius Webb, Jimmy Smith, Asa Jackson, Chykie Brown, Dominique Franks
Cut: Derek Cox, Tremain Jacobs, Sammy Seamster
Cox was recently signed, but didn’t see action until the second half. Jacobs cost the Ravens three points by running into the kicker at the end of the half, giving the Saints a second chance at a lengthy FG. Seamster didn’t show us enough, despite early rumblings of him having success in early camp practices. Franks got the start, and looked better. A couple of open field tackles in the red zone preventing a TD.
S: Matt Elam, Darian Stewart, Terrance Brooks, Jeromy Miles, Anthony Levine, Brynden Trawick
SSPD: Will Hill (Six games)
The Ravens typically keep six safeties. The top three are locks, Miles is liked for his special teams ability, Levine increased his stock by showing versatility to shift over to CB. Trawick is probably the odd man out after Will Hill serves his suspension.
K: Justin Tucker
P: Sam Koch
LS: Morgan Cox
Tucker ensured that his job was safe by going 5/5 on FGs. Ho hum.
23 offense + 27 defense + 3 special teams = 53
Next time the Ravens play…it counts! Who’s ready!