Fri, 22 Oct 2021

Who's Playing, Who's Not vs. Chiefs

Baltimore Ravens
18 Sep 2021, 23:25 GMT+10

Ryan Mink

The Ravens' injury issues continue and will leave Baltimore short-handed on "Sunday Night Football" against the Kansas City Chiefs.

Left tackle Ronnie Stanley has not practiced all week due to an ankle issue but is still listed as questionable to play. Wide receiver Marquise "Hollywood" Brown (ankle) practiced for the first time this week on Friday and is also questionable.

Patrick Mekari's Versatility Could Be Called Upon

If Stanley can't play, it would only further handicap an offensive line looking for more stability - particularly in pass protection off the edges - after Monday night in Las Vegas.

Head Coach John Harbaugh declined to give an update on his All-Pro left tackle's status on Friday.

Stanley's 2020 season was ended by a major ankle injury and Monday night in Las Vegas was his first game back (he played one series in the preseason finale against Washington). Stanley played all 68 offensive snaps against the Raiders and got a stiff challenge from former Raven Yannick Ngakoue.

If Stanley isn't able to play, the Ravens could move veteran Alejandro Villanueva from right tackle to left tackle, where he played his entire career in Pittsburgh. Patrick Mekari, the team's starting center down the stretch last season, is listed as the Ravens' backup right tackle.

"[His versatility is] very valuable," Harbaugh said. "I think that's a trait that's rare. He's a technician. He knows his assignments at every position, all the time, completely, and he plays hard. He'll play well."

Two Wide Receivers Are Questionable

Brown didn't seem to suffer any apparent injury in an impressive Monday night showing with six catches for 69 yards and a touchdown, but he sat out the first two practices of the week. Getting him back on the field Friday is a positive sign for his availability Sunday.

Sammy Watkins is ready to go against his former team, but if Brown doesn't suit up, that would thrust Devin Duvernay and James Proche II into bigger positions.

Duvernay, however, was limited in practice Thursday and Friday with a groin issue and is also questionable. First-round rookie receiver Rashod Bateman (groin) is still on injured reserve for at least two more games.

Cornerbacks Took a Hit to Depth

The Ravens' cornerback depth will also be tested as Chris Westry, who played well in 38 percent of the defensive snaps in Las Vegas, has been placed on injured reserve because of a knee injury.

The sting of that loss would be eased if veteran cornerback Jimmy Smith can suit up after missing the season-opener because of a lingering ankle injury suffered in training camp. Smith has yet to practice fully since returning to the field and is listed as questionable. Having Smith would particularly help the Ravens defend against Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce.

Cornerback Marlon Humphrey (back) was limited in practice all week. He's listed as questionable.

Rookie outside linebacker Daelin Hayes (knee/questionable) has been limited all week. Starting defensive end Derek Wolfe (back/hip) is still not practicing and has been ruled out.

Chiefs Are at Full Strength

While the Ravens are dealing with widespread injuries and have a league-high 14 players already on injured reserve, the Chiefs enter the game totally healthy.

All 53 players on their active roster are ready to play, as nobody is even listed as questionable. The Chiefs have three players on injured reserve and only one would potentially be a starter (linebacker Willie Gay).

Two defensive stars, safety Tyrann Mathieu and defensive end Frank Clark, both returned to practice this week and will suit up in Baltimore.

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