Temper expectations for Ravens RB J.K. Dobbins early in the season

J.K. Dobbins, Ravens (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)
J.K. Dobbins, Ravens (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) /

The Baltimore Ravens’ backfield is shaping up nicely with the Kenyan Drake acquisition and with J.K. Dobbins returning to elite form.

Dobbins, who tore his ACL in last year’s preseason finale, was activated off the PUP list on August 8 and has been working hard to get back into game-ready shape. Head coach John Harbaugh paid Dobbins a few compliments during Wednesday’s practice, commenting on Dobbins’ “quickness” and noticing that “he looks better every day.”

It’s still unclear as to whether Dobbins will play in the Week 1 opener against the New York Jets, but these last few days bode well for Dobbins’ continual recovery.

All that said, the third-year running back will likely be eased into snaps at the beginning of the season, and fans shouldn’t expect him to come flying out of the gate even if he does play in Week 1.

Ravens are pleased with J.K. Dobbins’ current recovery timeline

Behind Dobbins, backup running back Gus Edwards will not be playing in Week 1 after Edwards got placed on the PUP list on Tuesday, sidelining him for the first four regular season games.

The Ravens added critical depth in the form of former Raiders back Kenyan Drake, who will likely share rotational snaps with veteran Mike Davis.

Given the fact that Dobbins is returning from a serious injury, expectations for the star running back should be kept to a minimum, at least for the start of the season.

Dobbins joins Ronnie Stanley and a few others as potential injury liabilities, and even though he assumes a very important starting role on the team, the Ravens will want to make sure he’s at 100 percent when he steps back onto the field.

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Those who believe J.K. Dobbins will enjoy a breakout season aren’t necessarily wrong — he will just need a few games to find his footing in 2022.