The Baltimore Ravens and J.K. Dobbins are not closer to fixing their broken relationship by the looks of it. The franchise keeps speaking nicely of the rusher, but the running back is going forward with an "unofficial hold-in" that has no ending in the near future.
Dobbins might or might return to the field any time soon. There is a chance he locks into his current holding position, refuses to play regular-season games, loses money, and stubbornly enters free agency in 2024 looking for the deal he wants. Nobody knows about this man.
Head Coach John Harbaugh and many members of the backfield (including RBs Coach Willie Taggart) spoke to the media members attending Day 12 of training camp on Tuesday at The Castle and everybody seemed to agree: the Ravens want Dobbins back, but it's up to Dobbins to return.
"I feel very good about the running back room as far as how they’re practicing. I think every single guy is doing a really great job and stepping up. You can go right through every single guy, and they’re all doing excellent out there. I love the way they’re playing, so that’s been exciting," Harbaugh said on Tuesday, as transcribed on BaltimoreRavens.com.
Speaking about Dobbins in particular, Harbaugh revealed that "The ball is in J.K.'s court." The coach said that he and Dobbins "have talked," that they "talked again yesterday--we had a great conversation," and that he "expects him back very soon, but I don’t have anything to say about it. It’s up to J.K., so hopefully that will happen soon."
Harbaugh wasn't the lone man touching on Dobbins' ongoing hold-in yesterday. Here's a summary of all quotes from players and coaches related to Dobbins spoken on Tuesday, August 8, following Day 12 of training camp at the Under Armour Performance Center at Owings Mills.
All quotes have been pulled from the transcripts made available over BaltimoreRavens.com:
"Well, I feel very good about the running back room as far as how they're practicing. I think every single guy is doing a really great job and stepping up. I mean you can go right through every single guy, and they're all doing excellent out there. I love the way they're playing, so that's been exciting. Of course, J.K. [Dobbins] … The ball is in J.K.'s court. We have talked. We talked again yesterday. We had great conversation. I do expect him back very soon, but I don't have anything to say about it. It's up to J.K., so hopefully that will happen soon.""- John Harbaugh, Head Coach
" I think it's important to develop a relationship with all the guys – not just J.K. [Dobbins], but all of them – to get to know them. I haven't worked with those guys before [or] coached them before, and I think that's a big part of coaching – is, [first], get to know them; get to know them on a personal level, and for them to get to know me on a personal level. I think once we do that, then it's easier for me to coach them, and it's easier for them to be coached by me. So, that started way back when I got the job and started that relationship, and we've been building that along the way. And like I said, I enjoy every single one of the guys – J.K. included – and it's going to be fun."- Willie Taggart, Running Backs Coach
"I see [Dobbins] every day. He's in there. He's still working hard. I know he's going to be ready, because that's the type of guy he is." "- Gus Edwards, Running Back
"I really don't have [a perspective on Dobbins' situation]. How he feels towards what he has to do is on him. Everybody's situation is different. I dealt with the same thing. I had a lot going on. I can't say what he's thinking [or] how he's going about it, but I do know what type of player he is. I've watched film on him. He's a great player, so when he comes out, he's not going to do [anything] but help the team and better us. When he's out here, it's going to be open arms. We're going to be ready for him to make plays and do what he [does]. He's a playmaker."- Melvin Gordon III, Running Back
"We're all excited to get J.K. back out here, he's a playmaker. We talk every single day. Whenever things get ready for him, he'll be right back out here. Until then, we're out here learning and having fun every single day. We have a whole bunch of guys in the room, and it's fun to see everybody show what they can do."- Justice Hill, Running Back