Last chance rookies!
The Ravens travel to Atlanta for their final preseason game against the Falcons. This game is all about players making their final push for roster spots on the team. For those who don’t make the team, a chance to contribute on another team depends on how they perform in this game. Here are 5 players I believe need to make an impact in this game.
Anthony Allen RB
Anthony Allen has been very consistent throughout camp. He’s a hard runner and would be a nice change of pace for both Ricky Williams and Ray Rice. Jalene Parmele is familiar with the offense so he has the edge right now. But if Allen can continue to perform like he did in the game against the Redskins, he could force the team to carry 4 backs or cut Parmele all together. For this to happen, he has to make an impact on special teams. Another problem that all rookie running backs have is the ability to pass block. It’ll be interesting to see how Allen performs in this game.
LaQuan Williams WR
By far, the best undrafted free agent pick up for the Ravens this year has been LaQuan Williams. The former Terp has performed better than 2nd round draft pick Torrey Smith, who is also a former terp. Talking to some players in Maryland, it was believed that LaQuan Williams was the best well rounded receiver in Maryland. He has shown that so far in camp and in preseason games. LaQuan Williams is in a very difficult situation. Everyone knows how well he has performed, but his biggest hurdle may be the depth chart itself. LaQuan has to continue to impress in this game in order to force the team to carry six wide receivers. It’s not unheard of in the NFL, but the Ravens rarely carry that many. Williams will need to make an offer the team simply can’t refuse.
Tyrod Taylor QB
Tyrod Taylor has already made the team, but he’s fighting for that back up spot. It’s a spot the Ravens want him to have, but with extreme caution. The thought of the Ravens championship hopes resting on the health of one player doesn’t sit well with anyone inside the Ravens facility. But Taylor has a skill set that intrigues Cam Cameron and the rest of the coaching staff. If he continues to play like he has, he’ll be the Ravens back up. But if he gives any hint that he can’t get the job done, the Ravens will pick up a veteran QB. That’s taking up an unnecessary roster spot, and would be a huge blow to the team and Tyrod Taylor.
Chykie Brown CB
Chykie Brown has had an ok camp. He has flashes of being able to break to the ball quickly. But too many times he’s found out of position on passing plays. If he is to make the team, it will be done on special teams.
Pernell McPhee DL
McPhee has been a pleasant surprise for the Ravens this preseason. Brought in solely to help against the run, McPhee has come into camp with a high motor and an impressive ability to rush the passer. This game can not only cement him on the active roster, but give him a considerable amount of playing time once the season starts. Rookie or not, pass rushers are a rare and hot commodity.