The Baltimore Ravens got the season off to a good start with a 25-9 win over the Houston Texans last Sunday at M&T Bank Stadium, but the win was a costly one as they’ve lost running back J.K. Dobbins for the year due to a significant injury.

“J.K. [Dobbins] has torn Achilles, unfortunately,” Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. “So, that’s going to end his season. I just feel bad for him. It’s not the way we expected this to go, and he’s worked really hard, but J.K is a strong-minded individual, and he has a big heart [and] a very large spirit. So, he’s going to bounce back from this as well.”

Dobbins was recovering from a knee injury during training camp and was placed on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list. The fourth-year running back was reportedly angry about not getting a new contract while entering the final year of his rookie deal that pays him a $1.4 million salary in 2023.

The Ravens activated Dobbins in time for the season and he was the starting running back against Houston. Dobbins was off to a decent start having carried the ball eight times for 22 yards and a touchdown. Then, disaster struck when he caught a short pass in the flat and got yanked to the ground by Texans safety M.J. Stewart. The loss was devastating to Dobbins’ teammates. 

“That’s very unfortunate,” quarterback Lamar Jackson said. “I feel like J.K. has been busting his behind to get back on that field and just show the world what he’s capable of and to help us out along the way.” 

Ravens receiver Odell Beckham Jr. said knowing Dobbins will miss the season made him sick to his stomach, but encouraged the team to have a next-man-up mentality and challenged them to play for Dobbins. 

The next man up will be a committee that consists of Justice Hill and Gus Edwards. Hill had eight carries for nine yards, although two of them were for touchdowns. Edwards also had nine carries but he gained 32 yards. Hill and Justice along with former Raven Kenyan Drake filled in for Dobbins last season when he injured his knee. Drake is currently a free agent. 

The Ravens added veteran running back Melvin Gordon to the practice squad in July. Gordon ran 17 times for 59 yards in the preseason. Gordon becomes the third part of the group that will be the next men up for the Ravens. 

“I think that we’re good,” Harbaugh said. “I like the guys we’ve got. Melvin, he’s here for a reason. Certainly didn’t expect it to be this quick, but that’s why he’s here. That’s why he wanted to stay here, I think, because he likes it here. He likes the offense and he likes the environment. He’s a heck of a talented guy. You saw him in the preseason. He’s a proven back, so I’m very, very glad that he’s here.”

Tyler Hamilton
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