The Baltimore Ravens officially have a problem. Running back J.K. Dobbins keeps missing practices while listed in the PUP list through training camp but attending practices in street clothes. John Harbaugh doesn't know when he'll be back.
That's the status of the situation, which is growing into a more worrying one with each passing day.
Dobbins is seemingly undergoing a "hold-in" at the Ravens training camp and Harbaugh admitted on Wednesday, following Day 7 at the Under Armour Performance Center, that he "doesn't know when he's going to come back."
As quoted by Ryan Mink of BaltimoreRavens.com, Harbaugh said "It's a fair question" asking at what point this current situation with Dobbins will become a concern.
"There is a point in time when it does become a concern," Harbaugh agreed. "J.K. and I talked last night. We talk a lot. He wants to be out there, and he needs to be out there, just like any player does."
Dobbins attended Baltimore's mandatory minicamp in June, though he did so in a very "I'm just here so I won't get fined" type of way. He basically was avoiding getting fined, and getting checks removed from his wage bill for each day he missed, declining to take part in any practice back then.
The rusher hasn't provided a reason for not practicing these days, and the franchise has not offered any clue other than putting him on the PUP list without much explaining added to that.
Harbaugh and the Ravens as a whole, obviously, value Dobbins for what he is: one the greatest active running backs in the NFL. The coach made that clear following Wednesday's practice, saying the team "miss J.K.," and adding that "You want him out there--He’s a great player, and it’s one less great player you have out there."
With less than two weeks for the first pre-season game of the summer and a little over a month for the regular-season kick-off, it's time for Dobbins to start practicing or to come out with a clear explanation of what's going on with his situation.
Otherwise, the Ravens would do good by letting him sit out and use all other rostered rushers in 2023 while Dobbins keeps losing leverage and, most probably, misses out on landing a deal that absolutely nobody will offer him in the future if he doesn't practice/play and proves he's both healthy and productive on a weekly basis.