Late For Work 9/23: Kelechi Osemele Tops Ravens Report Card

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Osemele Tops Ravens Report Card

Kelechi Osemele likes the grades he's getting from Pro Football Focus (PFF).

And why wouldn't he? Osemele sits firmly atop the NFL guard rankings created by the statistical website.

Through three games of the season, K.O. has a cumulative grade of plus-8.2. And guess who comes in second? His teammate and fellow guard from the right side, Marshal Yanda, with a cumulative grade of plus-7.2.

Osemele retweeted his ranking (with the cumulative grade BEFORE the Browns game was added).

#Ravens left guard @KOsevendeuce once again shines in defeat of Browns yesterday. Per @PFF, K.O. highest grade of o-line 5.7. #Beast — Brian Bower (@sportguyRSR) September 22, 2014

Osemele and the entire Ravens offensive line opened holes for backups Justin Forsett and Lorenzo Taliaferro to rush for a combined 160 yards. Four of the Ravens' five offensive linemen received positive grades for their outing Sunday.

K.O. also retweeted this fun one from ESPN radio and CBS reporter Zack Spears, who highlighted a signature play from Osemele in which he appeared to pancake Browns defensive lineman John Hughes.

Additionally, PFF highlighted rookie linebacker C.J. Mosley, who had the sixth-highest grade (plus-1.3) on the team Sunday, and led the defense with six stops.

"Stupid personal foul penalty aside, Mosley is a guy you enjoy watching," wrote Khaled Elsayed. "He's not afraid to run through traffic and has no problems engaging linemen."

The lowest graded Ravens was safety Matt Elam (negative-4.2), who Head Coach Harbaugh admitted had some "poor plays," but added the secondary as whole contributed to broken plays.

"Continues to look out of place as the deep safety for the Ravens, with his feel for what is going on deep down the field tested again," wrote Elsayed. "His struggles to adjust to receivers being passed off to him led to two big completions for 113 in total yardage."

Top-Five Grades
Kelechi Osemele: 3.1
Marshal Yanda: plus-2.6
Rick Wagner: plus-2.4
Terrell Suggs: plus-1.5
Justin Tucker: plus-1.6
Bottom-Five GradesMatt Elam: negative-4.2
Eugene Monroe: negative-3.6
Asa Jackson: negative-1.9
Joe Flacco: negative-1.5
Owen Daniels: negative-1.3
Detroit To Sign Bynes Off Practice Squad, Thompson Expected Back

Ravens inside linebacker Josh Bynes is set to become a Detroit Lion, according to Aaron Wilson of The Baltimore Sun.

Bynes was available for the taking by another team after he was cut and placed on the Ravens' practice squad earlier this month.  With the Lions in need of a linebacker after Stephen Tulloch was placed on injured reserve with a torn anterior cruciate ligament, they are expected to sign Bynes to their active roster.

The former undrafted free agent from Auburn played in 26 career games with nine starts for the Ravens since 2011. He started six games last season. He will be remembered most for recording the final tackle of Super Bowl XLVII when he took down San Francisco returner Ted Ginn Jr.

The Ravens have re-signed undrafted rookie defensive tackle A.J. Pataiali'i to the practice squad, according to Wilson.

Meanwhile, the Ravens cut wide receiver Deonte Thompson Saturday prior to the game against the Browns in order to elevate running back Fitzgerald Toussaint with starter Bernard Pierce inactive with a thigh injury.

Wilson reports Thompson is expected to be re-signed.

"If Thompson clears waivers Monday, then he's expected to be re-signed by the Ravens," Wilson wrote.

AFC North 'Ain't No Joke'

We're three weeks through the regular season, and we're getting a clearer picture of how strong the AFC North is.

Ravens guard Will Rackley (injured reserve) summed it up best in a tweet:

Leading the way in the division is the 3-0 Cincinnati Bengals. Watching the Bengals dismantle teams, including their 33-7 drubbing of the Tennessee Titans Sunday, makes the Ravens' loss to Cincy in Week 1 not look as bad as it may have at first, says The Baltimore Sun's Jon Meoli.

"[T]he farther the team gets from that season-opening loss to the now 3-0 Bengals, the better it looks," Meoli wrote.

"Cincinnati might be the best team in the NFL."

Of course, the disclaimer that Meoli had to give is that quarterback Andy Dalton has yet to win a playoff game. But even with Dalton not carrying the team in the regular season thus far, the Bengals are still dominating with an impressive run game and suffocating defense.

"The Bengals] could be the class of what's shaping up to be a strong division," Meoli said.  "Through three weeks, the four AFC North teams have only lost to each other. The Pittsburgh Steelers lost to the Ravens. The Cleveland Browns lost to the Ravens and Steelers, and the Ravens lost to Cincinnati. It's safe to say the rest will also lose to the Bengals, and that the Ravens won't be alone in it for much longer."

Quick Hits

  • James Harrison is expected to come out of retirement and make a comeback with the Steelers. Ian Rapoport reported that Pittsburgh is expected to re-sign the 36-year-old outside linebacker in the next couple of days. [NFL.com]
  • This is the fifth-straight season the Ravens have started with a 2-1 record, and it's the sixth time in Harbaugh's seven years in Baltimore. And how often did they improve to 3-1? In all the four previous seasons. [ESPN]          

Praying for Pitta — Torrey Smith (@TorreySmithWR) September 21, 2014

#RavenNation I'm only here to do 1 thing make plays!!!! #agent89 #stevesmithsr @acesmith704 is my WHY pic.twitter.com/sN3ox0ZbTp — Steve Smith Sr (@89SteveSmith) September 21, 2014

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