The Baltimore Ravens held workouts yesterday for free agent running backs Le’Veon Bell and Devonta Freeman, according to a report from ESPN Ravens reporter Jamison Hensley.
Bell, 29, appeared in 11 games last season for the New York Jets and Kansas City Chiefs, rushing for 328 yards on 4.0 yards per carry and two scores. The two-time All-Pro infamously held out on playing for the Pittsburgh Steelers during the 2018 season, seeking a new contract. Bell signed with the Jets in 2019, but in two seasons, played in only 17 games and rushed for just 863 yards on 3.3 yards per carry and three scores.
Freeman, 29, spent six seasons and played in two Pro Bowls as a member of the Atlanta Falcons before appearing in just five games for the New York Giants last season. Freeman had the lowest rushing output of his career in Big Blue, rushing for 172 yards on 3.2 yards per carry and one touchdown.
Dobbins, the Ravens’ 2020 second-round selection, suffered a torn ACL in Baltimore’s last preseason game, knocking him out for the season. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport then reported yesterday that third-stringer Justice Hill suffered a torn achilles in practice this week, ending his season.
This leaves 26-year-old Gus Edwards as the most experienced back in the Ravens room. Edwards has been a model of consistency since entering the league in 2018, rushing for over 700 yards in each season as the second and third option in Baltimore’s rushing attack.
Baltimore’s run game has been head coach John Harbaugh’s go-to weapon in recent years. The Ravens have led the league in rushing the last two seasons since Lamar Jackson became the starting quarterback.
The Ravens’ stout offensive line has also undergone changes this offseason, notably with the loss of two-time Pro Bowl right tackle, Orlando Brown Jr. Brown Jr. was traded to the Chiefs in April in exchange for a 2021 first-round pick and three other selections. Brown’s replacement is former Steelers tackle and two-time Pro Bowler, Alejandro Villanueva.
While no signing has been announced to this point, the workouts show that the team believes they need a veteran buffer behind Edwards. Edwards’ current backup is 25-year-old Ty’Son Williams, an undrafted free agent pickup in 2020.