Ravens won’t play Lamar Jackson and other starters in preseason opener

Ravens, Mark Andrews (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)
Ravens, Mark Andrews (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) /

The Baltimore Ravens are entering the 2022 season with an extra dose of caution and plan to sit a handful of starters in their first preseason game.

Baltimore has every reason to tread lightly this year after their roster was devastated by an injury plague in 2021.

Already in training camp, the team suffered its share of painful losses and unfortunate setbacks: offseason signing Vince Biegel suffered a season-ending injury, and rookie Tyler Linderbaum will miss a few weeks due to a leg injury. Mark Andrews had a frightening injury scare in camp, not to mention several experienced starters are still recovering from their respective injuries on the PUP list.

Injuries were the theme of Ravens’ preseason last year, and head coach John Harbaugh is doing everything he can to ensure the team fields a healthy elite roster in 2022.

On Saturday, Harbaugh announced that Lamar Jackson, Mark Andrews, Marlon Humphrey, Marcus Williams, and Justin Houston will sit out for the Ravens’ preseason opener against the Tennessee Titans on Thursday.

Baltimore Ravens are resting key players ahead of the start of the 2022 season

Harbaugh reportedly declined to say whether Lamar Jackson will be held out for Baltimore’s other two preseason games. Given Jackson’s recent ankle injury, it would come as no surprise if he continued to sit on the sidelines before the start of the 2022 season.

Last year, Jackson only participated in 10 preseason snaps in part due to COVID-19, and it seems likely that the team will maintain a cautious approach this time around.

Most would agree this is a smart move on the Ravens’ part, though the team obviously has to play somebody for these early preseason match-ups. For now, expect backup Tyler Huntley to take snaps under center on Thursday along with other second- and third-stringers on both sides of the ball.

As many as 25 Ravens players went on injured reserve at some point last season, and Baltimore is taking crucial strides to reduce injury risk in every possible way.

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Hopefully, the Ravens’ team chemistry won’t suffer too much of a hit with Jackson’s absence — as well as the absence of other starters — in preseason.