Skill-Position Players Added To Ravens' Cutdown List
SIX WIDEOUTS, THREE RUNNING BACKS SETTLED UPON
By Joe Platania
OWINGS MILLS -- This preseason, the Ravens led the NFL in total offense by producing more than 390 yards per game and were tops in the AFC in points (team-preseason-record 108), pass completions (113) and attempts (189).
Because the team is relying on a more diverse offense this year, many of the players that helped achieve those distinctions made the 53-man active roster when final cuts were made Friday afternoon.
During the 10-man early wave of cuts, the Ravens dealt mainly with the depth and quality of their interior lines.
That stands to reason, because when head coach John Harbaugh worked on the Philadelphia Eagles' staff under Andy Reid, that team usually kept more linemen than normal on both sides of the ball. Barring future alterations to the roster, the Ravens look to be keeping 16 linemen, nine on offense and seven on defense.
Later during the day, the Ravens started to chip away at their skill-position units, releasing tight end Bruce Figgins, wideout Dorian Graham and running back Damien Berry, whose arm was in a sling late during the St. Louis preseason finale after suffering a shoulder stinger.
Berry is one of several players that will fall into some sort of injury category, be it injured reserve, waived/injured, or injury settlement.
Tight end Matt Balasavage (ankle), linebackers Josh Bynes (cracked vertebrae) and Ricky Brown (unknown), as well as guards Jah Reid (calf) and Justin Boren (foot sprain), all fit into this category.
It appears that diminutive undrafted running back Bobby Rainey has indeed made the active roster, having led the Ravens in preseason receptions (14) and rushing attempts (23). He also averaged 6.8 yards per punt return and more than 23 yards per kickoff runback.
With Berry's injury relegation, Rainey is the third-string running back behind Ray Rice and Bernard Pierce.
Another undrafted offensive contributor that made the team was ex-Florida wideout Deonte Thompson, who edged out ex-New York Jets free agent Logan Payne and became one of six at that position likely to be kept on the roster.
The 6-foot, 203-pounder averaged nearly 40 yards per kick return and caught 10 passes -- some of the spectacular variety -- for a 14-yard average and two touchdowns.
On defense, hard-hitting inside linebacker Nigel Carr was waived. An aggressive player out of Alabama State, Carr incurred a fine of more than $15,000 for a hit during the win against Jacksonville.
As late afternoon neared, several position battles whose outcomes had yet to be made public involved the possible existence of a third quarterback on the roster for the first time since 2009, as well as the fate of 2010 top draft pick Sergio Kindle, whose fortunes got a big boost when Chavis Williams was released earlier during the day.
CUT LIST (as of 4 p.m.)
(Sources: Twitter, published reports)
TO INJURED RESERVE
WR Tommy Streeter (foot)
POSSIBLE INJURY CATEGORIES
TE Matt Balasavage (ankle)
LB Josh Bynes (cracked vertebrae)
LB Ricky Brown (unknown)
RB Damien Berry (stinger)
G Jah Reid (calf)
G Justin Boren (foot sprain)
WR Dorian Graham
TE Bruce Figgins
DE Terrence Moore
T Cordaro Howard
S Omar Brown
T Jack Cornell
DT Ishmaa'ily Kitchen
LB Chavis Williams
LB Nigel Carr
DT Nicholas Jean-Baptiste
RB Anthony Allen
ROSTER SIZE: 57
REMAINING TO BE CUT: Four
Posted Aug. 31, 2012