J.K. Dobbins is back. The Ravens' running back is practicing for the first time this summer on Monday.
He has passed his conditioning test to come off the physically unable to perform list.
Dobbins missed 14 training camp practices and the first preseason game Saturday night against the Eagles. He has 27 days to get ready before the Ravens kick off the regular season on Sept. 10 against the Houston Texans.
Dobbins has been in all the Ravens' meetings, learning new Offensive Coordinator Todd Monken's system. Still, it's obviously important to get practice reps to get comfortable in the offense before the season starts.
Dobbins is entering a contract year and, according to NFL’s Network’s Ian Rapoport, there have been discussions about a long-term contract in Baltimore.
Last Tuesday, Head Coach John Harbaugh said the ball was in Dobbins’ court in terms of when he would start practicing and that they've had "great" conversations. Harbaugh said he expected Dobbins back soon.
Now nearly two years removed from a major knee injury suffered in the 2021 preseason, Dobbins is in position to have a monster year.
Though the Ravens will use more three-wide receiver formations (11 personnel) and be a more balanced attack in Monken's system, they'll still run the ball a lot and the team's running backs should also catch more passes than in years past. Dobbins has shown his potential in that regard as a playmaker in space.
He was one of the NFL's best running backs down the stretch last year after having a midseason knee procedure. Over his final five games last season, Dobbins averaged 6.5 yards per carry, and he topped 100 yards in his first two games back. Dobbins also caught four passes for 43 yards and a touchdown in the Ravens' playoff loss in Cincinnati.
Dobbins isn't the only weapon in the Ravens' backfield, however, as shown in the team's 20-19 win over the Philadelphia Eagles in the preseason opener.
Gus Edwards ran hard and said last week that he feels much better physically and "ready to have my best year." Justice Hill ripped off a 37-yard run, which was the longest offensive play from scrimmage. Veteran Melvin Gordon III, who was signed shortly before the start of training camp, has looked quick in practice and the preseason opener. Undrafted rookie Keaton Mitchell had a 35-yard touchdown called back because of a holding penalty.
"I feel like we have the best running back room in the league," Hill said after Saturday's game.
"We all bring a different skillset, and whenever we're out there, we can all show that. So, whatever number is called, whoever's number is called, we'll all just go out there and execute and make plays."
Dobbins was on the sideline in a T-shirt and bucket hat watching his teammates in Saturday's game and engaging with them on the bench.
"It's all love," Gordon said. "I think he's confident in what type of player he is as well. There's no hate from him. I'm sure he's happy to see us making plays."