Lardarius Webb 'Shocked' By Jimmy Smith, Sees Turnaround Coming


Lardarius Webb is Baltimore's last cornerback standing.

After the season-ending foot surgery to Jimmy Smith, Webb is the Ravens' only healthy cornerback have started the season on the 53-man roster.

The veteran defender is the most experienced player in the short-handed secondary, and much of the responsibility will fall on him to prevent Smith's injury from having a devastating impact on the unit.

"I'm just shocked. I'm sad for him," Webb said. "We're going to miss him all over – in the meeting rooms, on the field – he's a great guy. He's one of my closest friends. I'm just going to make sure his head is up and he has a positive mindset, and he goes to work to get back."

Webb and the Ravens know how significant it is to lose Smith, who was in the midst of a breakout season. He was one of the NFL's top cornerbacks through the first seven games of the season, and arguably the Ravens' top defender.

Now the Ravens will rely on Webb, undrafted rookie Tramain Jacobs and recent acquisition Danny Gorrer. Jacobs and Gorrer were both added to the 53-man roster this week after the Ravens cut cornerbacks Dominique Franks and Chykie Brown.

Despite the carrousel in the secondary, Webb expressed confidence in the group.

"We all know that we're going to be good. We have to move on," he said. "It's next man up."

Head Coach John Harbaugh had a similar mindset.

"We'll be fine. We'll recover," Harbaugh said. "We have good players at every position, and we'll pick up the slack as a group and as a unit. It happens all around the league. It's just the way it is. It's football."

Adjusting to life without Smith is at the top of the priority list for the Ravens. He went down on the opening series of a Week 8 loss to the Bengals, and then Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger threw six touchdowns against the Ravens last week.

Fixing the issues in those last games is critical for the Ravens as they look to avoid falling in too deep of a hole in the division race.

"We all see a turnaround coming," Webb said. "We just have to go out in practice, go out on the field and grind. We have to work our butts off to get better so we can play better on Sunday.

"I have to get better myself. Speaking about the group – me first – I have to get myself together, which I'm feeling good. We just all have to get on the same page."

From a strategy standpoint, Webb indicated that losing Smith won't force the Ravens to make any drastic schematic changes. Webb expects to play the same role he did when he and Smith were both healthy.

"It doesn't affect me at all," Webb said. "I have my side and I do my thing. I play corner, I play nickel, I'm all over the place. I'm going to continue to do the same thing I've been doing."

Injuries in the secondary have been a storyline throughout the season.

Webb missed most of the first four games with a back injury that occurred the first week of training camp. Asa Jackson went down with a toe injury in Week 5 and was placed on injured reserve – designated to return.

Webb, Smith and Jackson never played a full game together this year.

The sliver of good news is that Jackson is eligible to return in Week 14 against the Dolphins.

"I'm just doing everything to get better for that point, and when it gets there we'll see," Jackson said. "I just want to get back and do whatever I can to help us win games and get in the playoffs."

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