The Baltimore Ravens were decimated on defense this offseason as they watched players like Rey Lewis retire, Ed Reed depart via free agency, and Bernard Pollard be a cap casualty.
Now, they’ll be without their starting weakside linebacker after the team announced Jameel McClain will remain on the PUP list and miss the first six games.
McClain, who has been sidelined since suffering a spinal cord contusion in the Ravens’ Dec.16 loss to the Washington Redskins, has been on the PUP list since the start of training camp.
With McClain sidelined, Josh Bynes has emerged as the starter at weak-side linebacker with veteran Daryl Smith starting in the middle. McClain, 28, has started 44 games with the Ravens the past three seasons after making the team as an undrafted free agent in 2008.
Last year, McClain started 13 games and finished third on the team with 79 tackles (57 solo) and 3 pass defenses. The Ravens will hope to have McClain back in time for another late-season run to defend their super Bowl crown.
The Ravens are now without all four of their main linebackers from their Super Bowl squad after Paul Kruger signed with the Cleveland Browns, Lewis retired, and Dannell Ellerbe signed with the Miami Dolphins.