Amidst all of Baltimore’s injury concerns, the best news of the weekend was that starting quarterback Joe Flacco is active for Sunday’s matchup with the New York Jets.
Flacco is dealing with a right shoulder injury that he suffered last week against the Giants, and he missed two days of practice to give the shoulder time to heal. He returned to practice as a full participant Friday, and his teammates noticed no difference in the zip he had throwing the football.
While Flacco is active, the Ravens are still missing several key starters. The inactives for Baltimore are wide receiver Steve Smith Sr. (ankle), right guard Marshal Yanda (shoulder), linebackers Terrell Suggs (biceps), Elvis Dumervil (foot) and C.J. Mosley (thigh), cornerback Shareece Wright (thigh) and left tackle Ronnie Stanley (foot).
Every inactive player for the Ravens is an injury-related scratch.
The only real surprise scratch for Baltimore is Stanley, who will miss his fourth-straight game because of the foot problem. He was a full participant all week in practice and was listed as questionable to play.
With Stanley and Yanda out again, the Ravens will likely keep their starting offensive line of Alex Lewis at left tackle, John Urschel at left guard, Jeremy Zuttah at center, Ryan Jensen at right guard and Rick Wagner at right tackle. Wagner is back in the lineup after missing last week’s game with a thigh injury.
This will be the second game in a row that Smith, Yanda, Dumervil and Mosley have missed. Suggs’ absence is not necessarily a surprise considering he tore his biceps last week. He is planning to play through the injury rather than undergoing season-ending surgery, but he needed more time let it heal.
With Suggs and Dumervil out, the Ravens will count on young pass rushers Za’Darius Smith and Matthew Judon to get after Jets quarterback Geno Smith, who is making his first start of the season.
A good sign for Baltimore is that cornerback Jimmy Smith is active after leaving last week’s game with a concussion. The performance of the secondary completely changed last week when Smith left the game, and he is one of the team’s most important players. Veteran corner Jerraud Powers is also active after a thigh injury forced him out of last week’s game early.
Return man Devin Hester is also back after missing a game with a thigh issue.
Running back Lorenzo Taliaferro and cornerback Robertson Daniel , who were both pulled up to the active roster Saturday, are active and going to make their 2016 season debuts. Rookie defensive lineman Willie Henry is also active for the first time this season.
The most notable inactive for the Jets is defensive lineman Muhammad Wilkerson. The other scratches for the Jets are quarterbacks Christian Hackenberg and Bryce Petty, linebacker Darron Lee, tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins, right tackle Brent Qvale and former Ravens wide receiver Jeremy Butler.
Linebacker Victor Ochi, who spent training camp with the Ravens, is also active for New York after getting called up from the Jets practice squad Saturday.