Skip to main content

John Harbaugh Discusses 'Complexity' of J.K. Dobbins' Absence

RB J.K. Dobbins
RB J.K. Dobbins

Head Coach John Harbaugh addressed J.K. Dobbins' absence from practice when asked about it after Wednesday's opening day of training camp.

Dobbins has been placed on the PUP list and hasn't practiced yet this offseason. Harbaugh said he isn't able to give a timeline of when Dobbins will practice at this time.

Dobbins is entering a contract year with an opportunity to be a major weapon in Offensive Coordinator Todd Monken's attack. The running back watched the later portion of Wednesday's practice from the sideline.

"I wish there was a simple answer," Harbaugh said. "There's some complexity to it. We're working through all that, J.K.'s working through it. There's always a lot of things that go into it. I'm looking forward to when he's out there."

Asked if Dobbins will be behind when he returns to the field, Harbaugh said "I know he'll get ready."

"He's in all the meetings mentally and doing those kind of things," Harbaugh said. "I also believe this about J.K., he'll be happy when he's out there. He wants to be out there, and we both want the same thing."

This is a crucial season for Dobbins, whose career got off to a promising start as a rookie in 2020 when he averaged 6.0 yards per carry, taking over as the lead back late in the season. He finished his rookie year with 805 yards rushing and set a franchise record for rookies with nine touchdowns.

However, NFL running backs seeking new contracts have found the current market to be challenging, and Dobbins' career was interrupted by a devastating season-ending knee injury in the final preseason game of 2021. He didn't return to the lineup until Week 3 of last season, and after appearing in four games, Dobbins underwent another knee procedure last October.

Dobbins returned faster and more elusive after the procedure, with back-to-back 100-yard games in Weeks 14 & 15. He averaged 99.2 yards over the last four games of the 2022 season, and coaches and teammates know Dobbins is an explosive runner who adds a valuable dimension to the offense.

"I haven't talked to him about the situation," Jackson said. "But I'm very excited. J.K. is J.K. I know he's going to work his tail off, can't wait (for him) to be out there."

Related Content