Mink: Eric DeCosta is always up for a trade and roster cutdowns are a time when the market is especially ripe. Last year, Baltimore reportedly tried to trade guard Tyre Phillips before he was released. The year before, the Ravens traded guard Ben Bredeson to the New York Giants. This year, it would not surprise me if another guard were a topic of trade conversation.
Ben Cleveland did not win the starting left guard spot and the Ravens drafted two young guards this year in Sala Aumavae-Laulu and Andrew Vorhees (who will get a redshirt year). If John Simpson is the Week 1 starter, Aumavae-Laulu can back up both guard spots, along with Patrick Mekari. Daniel Faalele is the backup right tackle.
Cleveland added to his value this training camp and preseason by playing right tackle, showing he has position versatility. The big, burly blocker also has played well in some regular-season games (he's played in 21 and started five over his first two seasons). There could be some interest around the league if Cleveland doesn't have a spot on Baltimore's 53-man roster.
Brown: I don't think the Ravens need to trade for another corner. They just need to get more corners healthy, which already began Wednesday.
I liked the recent signing of Ronald Darby, who I think will become a valuable member of the rotation. Ar'Darius Washington, Kevon Seymour and Brandon Stephens have all had strong preseasons, while Jalyn Armour-Davis has made plays when he's been able to stay on the field, and Arthur Maulet is another vet the Ravens have added since training camp began. That's not a bad nucleus to hold down the fort until Marlon Humphrey's return.
Would it be nice to acquire another experienced cornerback via trade? Yes, but how many teams would be willing to deal one of their top three corners this close to the season, and what would be the asking price? More cornerbacks will become available after teams trim their roster to 53 players, and it wouldn't surprise me to see the Ravens make a move at that point. However, I don't think they'll make a major trade to deal for a corner prior to Week 1.
Mink: Funny that you should ask this because I asked Offensive Coordinator Todd Monken about how much he likes trick plays last week. His answer:
"I like plays that work. So, if that works then I'm into trick plays. … We'll see. Usually, that's what the players come up with. That's usually what they like. They've got like the triple reverse pass – something like that. And they're usually the ones throwing it, just to say that."
Monken likes to empower his players. He likes to run with their ideas. But he's not going to go with something he doesn't have confidence in. Monken has a history of running some trick plays with Odell Beckham Jr. in Cleveland. As Monken said, we'll see …
Brown: I'd go with Stephens, who Head Coach John Harbaugh said last week has gone back to being primarily a corner. Stephens does a nice job contesting the ball in the air, and he's a sure tackler who takes proper angles to prevent runs after catch. His ability to play corner has been reassuring during this recent stretch when many players at the position have been dealing with injuries.
Washington is another cornerback/safety who has made impressive plays at corner recently. Listed at 5-foot-8, Washington plays bigger than that with a feisty attitude and really battles on contested catches. He has the skillset to play slot corner and entering his third season, he looks like a player who's ascending and playing with more confidence. I think he's done enough to make the 53-man roster and will hold his own if given an opportunity.