The Ravens have suffered another blow at tight end.
Veteran Owen Daniels had surgery on his knee this week and he has been ruled out for Sunday's divisional matchup against the Cincinnati Bengals, Head Coach John Harbaugh announced Friday.
"As the week went on, his knee was not really progressing the way we wanted it to, so we went ahead and did a clean-up procedure," Harbaugh said.
The silver lining with Daniels is that his injury is not expected to be long-term, and he may even be ready to play in Week 9 against the Steelers.
"It could actually be next week," Harbaugh said. "We'll see how that goes. That would be an optimistic approach, but it could happen. That's where we're at on that."
Daniels, 31, has been a key playerfor the Ravens, especially after the season-ending hip injury to Dennis Pitta. Daniels took over the starting job after Pitta went down, and he's been a valuable target for quarterback Joe Flacco.
Daniels has 27 catches for 275 yards and three touchdowns this season.
Rookie Crockett Gillmore is expected to get his first start of the season with Daniels sidelined.
"I've prepared to be the guy from the first day I was here," Gillmore said. "I've been following those guys around – Owen and Dennis – so they've given me a great opportunity to just step in their shoes and do what I can do."
Gillmore's playing time has increased in recent weeks since Pitta went down, and the third-round pick has three catches for 29 yards on the year.
"He's going to be ready," Harbaugh said. "He's had a good week of practice. I think he's done a heck of a job and he'll be ready to go."
The only other tight end on the active roster is Ryan Taylor, who the Ravens signed early this month after he was cut by the Packers. Taylor has been inactive each of the last two weeks, but will likely make his Baltimore debut Sunday.
"He's a good athlete. He's real smart," Harbaugh said about Taylor. "He's done a nice job picking up the offense really quickly."