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Ravens Activate Tight End Nick Boyle To 53-Man Roster


So much for needing a lot of time to shake off the rust.

The Ravens have activated second-year tight end Nick Boyle to the 53-man roster after he came off a 10-week suspension earlier this week, meaning he'll likely see game action this Sunday against the Cincinnati Bengals.

Baltimore released defensive back Asa Jackson to make room for Boyle on the roster. Jackson had yet to see any game action since returning to Baltimore about a month ago.

Boyle hasn't played in a game since Dec. 6, 2015. He served a four-game suspension at the end of last season for violating the league's performance enhancing drug policy, then began this year on the shelf for 10 weeks after a second violation.

But Boyle proved enough in practice to make the Ravens pull the trigger on quickly finding him a spot.

"He came back in really good shape – very impressive shape," Head Coach John Harbaugh said Friday. "It looks like he's been working really hard, but there is a process of knocking off the rust for sure. It's been 10 weeks, 11 weeks since he's been in a football practice."

A fifth-round pick out of Delaware last season, he got off to a solid start as a rookie, making two starts in 11 games and hauling in 18 catches for 153 yards.

He will help a thin Ravens tight end corps that has been operating with only Dennis Pitta and Darren Waller since Week 5. Benjamin Watson (Achilles) and Maxx Williams (knee) are on injured reserve.

Boyle will help provide a strong blocker up front, which should help Baltimore run the ball better, and assist as an occasional pass catcher. The 6-foot-4, 260-pound player is also suited well for special teams.

During training camp, it looked like Boyle would have a hard time finding a spot once he came off suspension, but injuries have changed things and he now gets a chance to prove himself.

"I'm not going to mess up again; I'll put that out there fair and clear," Boyle said this week. "I thank [the Ravens] for even allowing me to come back here and allowing me to have a chance to maybe play here. I'm very grateful for that, and that's why I worked extremely hard when I wasn't allowed to be here."

Boyle was so jacked up that he had to remember that he couldn't give it his all in practice this week.

"I was ready to come out there and slam people," Boyle said.

"Those 11 weeks were very painful for him," Harbaugh added. "I'm hoping he makes somebody pay for his pain on that by playing well whenever we're able to get him out there."

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