Welcome to lunchtime links, where we round up all the latest Ravens news from around the web for your convenient consumption. Today we are power ranking NFL secondaries, discuss why Justin Forsett is part of a contingency plan, project the Ravens final 53 man roster, and talk about how the new offense is going to affect each position.
Matt Miller has power ranked each NFL secondary, and the Ravens come in at a respectable 11. Jimmy Smith’s emergence as a shut down corner and LaDarius Webb’s return to health make this a dangerous unit again. Couple that with a promising Matt Elam and new center fielder Terrence Brooks, and you’ve got a secondary that can cover and hit.
Aaron Wilson tells us that the signing of Justin Forsett this offseason was part of the Raven’s contingency plan in case of a Ray Rice suspension. Forsett is a talented back in his own right and possesses advanced knowledge of Gary Kubiak’s offense from their time together in Houston. He is a nice get at a low price, and should easily fill the third down back role while Rice is out.
Shehan Peiris is projecting the final 53 man roster for the Ravens over at Bleacher Report. Peiris predicts that the Ravens will only carry two quarterbacks, letting the disappointing Tyrod Taylor walk. He also projects only five wide receivers making the roster, but the biggest surprise comes at cornerback.
Peiris thinks that Dominique Franks will not only make the roster over Aaron Ross, but that he projects as the third corner over Chykie Brown and Asa Jackson. Personally, I think Ross has the edge right now over the unproven Franks. Things can certainly change in the next few weeks, but Franks couldn’t even crack the Falcon’s below average secondary in three seasons.
Ryan Mink breaks down how each offensive position is affected by Gary Kubiak’s new scheme. It’s a great read and gives us an idea of what type of transition the players are going through. The new scheme is bound to benefit running backs and tight ends the most, but it also benefits wide receivers that can block. Steve Smith, anybody?
Speaking of Smith, Clifton Brown points out that durability has been his trademark over 13 seasons. Smith has always practiced as hard as he plays on the field, and that intensity filters down to his workouts as well. It’s one of the reasons why the Ravens felt comfortable signing Smith and paying him reasonably well, even at the advanced (for a football player) age of 35.
Rocky Friedman breaks down what tight ends will make the final roster, including how many the Ravens should keep at the position. It’s a tough question, but we ultimately think they will only keep three – Pitta, Daniels, and Gillmore. They simply need the depth at other positions more (like corner). One of the other two – Phillip Supernaw or Nathan Overbay – will most likely wind up on the practice squad.
Who do you think will make the final roster at wide receiver and tight end?