With Vince Biegel’s season-ending Achilles tear on Thursday, the Baltimore Ravens are back on the prowl for a veteran outside linebacker in 2022.
Head coach John Harbaugh confirmed Biegel’s injury after practice yesterday, which was a tough blow to both the former Dolphins pass-rusher and the Ravens’ outside linebacker corps.
Biegel, who will likely miss his second full season in three years, has been in this exact situation before — in 2020 training camp with the Miami Dolphins, Biegel also tore his Achilles and missed the entire following season.
Biegel wouldn’t have likely cracked the starting lineup come Week 1, but he provided crucial depth and served as a competitive body in training camp.
Odafe Oweh and Tyus Bowser are the team’s projected starters assuming Bowser recovers in time; if not, veteran Justin Houston can slide in at the position and pick up where he left off last year.
Still, the Ravens arguably needed extra outside linebacker depth prior to Biegel’s injury, and now they need it more than ever.
Ravens are running out of time to fix their outside linebacker unit in 2022
If worst comes to worst, the Ravens have third- or fourth-string options they could lean on including veteran Steven Means, second-year player Daelin Hayes, and undrafted rookie free agents Jeremiah Moon and Chuck Wiley.
Baltimore had its eyes on free agent Jason Pierre-Paul earlier this summer, but the former Bucs edge-rusher suffered a shoulder injury in 2021, and the last thing the team needs is another defender placed on injured reserve.
With David Ojabo not ready to return until October at the earliest, the Ravens may take another look at Pierre-Paul or try out some other free agent options at the position. Trey Flowers and Carl Nassib could be intriguing acquisitions, if only to participate in training camp and fill in for practice reps.
Keeping Oweh and Houston healthy should be the team’s top priority, but the second should be finding an experienced vet to take snaps at the position in the preseason.
Expect Baltimore to make a move soon to address its thinning pass-rush corps in 2022.