The Baltimore Ravens lost second-year cornerback Tavon Young to an ACL injury last week during one of their OTA practices and on Monday they added a few familiar faces to their roster in cornerbacks Brandon Boykin and Al-Hajj Shabazz.
Boykin, who spent the 2015 season with the Pittsburgh Steelers after they had traded for during training camp that year, is now presumably healed from the torn pectoral muscle that he suffered last year during training camp as a member of the Chicago Bears.
Boykin, who was originally drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles in the fourth round of the 2012 NFL Draft out of Georgia, was traded to the Steelers in exchange for a 2016 draft pick on August 1, 2015. While he would go on to play in all 16 regular season games for the Steelers during the 2015 regular season, Boykin didn’t start seeing the field regularly on defense until late in the year. He ended the 2015 season with 25 total tackles, one interception, and one forced fumble.
The Steelers chose not to re-sign Boykin after the 2015 season was over and during that time their rumors that he was dealing with some sort of degenerative hip injury long after he had signed a one-year contract with the Carolina Panthers in March of 2016. The Panthers, however, cut ties with Boykin roughly two months after they had signed him and he ultimately signed a one-year contract with the Bears in late July. His pectoral injury landed him on the Bears Reserve/Injured list.
While Boykin is now a member of the Ravens, it will be interesting to see if he’s ultimately able to make their 53-man roster as a slot cornerback.
As for Shabazz, he dressed for seven games with the Steelers last season and was primarily used on special teams. The former undrafted free agent out of West Chester College spent quite a bit of the 2016 season on the Steelers practice squad in addition to a few weeks on the roster of the Houston Texans after they claimed him off waivers from the Steelers this past December.