The Baltimore Ravens are in desperate need of a spark on defense, as their once-proud unit has struggled mightily this year. Now comes news that MLB Ray Lewis is not expected to return from his triceps tear for the regular season. He is however expected to be back in time to play in the playoffs. The Ravens have already locked up a playoff spot, but need a win in one of their last two games to lock up the AFC North crown.
To make matters worse, starting strong safety Bernard Pollard (ribs) is officially doubtful for Week 16 against the New York Giants. The Ravens have also placed LB Jameel McClain (neck) on injured reserve and signed OLB Adrian Hamilton from their practice squad.
The Ravens are expected to use the franchise tag on free agent QB Joe Flacco if the two sides don’t work out a long-term deal before February when free agency starts. Both sides have ceased negotiations for now, but are expected to re-open talks once the season ends. The Ravens are suffering through a three-game losing streak in which Flacco has committed six turnovers (three interceptions, three fumbles), and if they continue their collapse, the less-likely it becomes that Flacco remains in Baltimore long-term.