The Baltimore Ravens, looking to close out the game, went for two after scoring a touchdown with just seconds left that put them one point behind the Pittsburgh Steelers. They could not connect, but they seemingly have lost more than just a game. Ian Rapoport is reporting that their top cornerback, Marlon Humphrey, “is suspected to be out for the season with a shoulder injury”. Jamison Hensley of ESPN also corroborated the report. The injury reportedly occurred on the Steelers’ go-ahead touchdown late in the fourth quarter as he attempted to tackle Diontae Johnson short of the end zone, but failed.
— David J. Chao – ProFootballDoc (@ProFootballDoc) December 6, 2021
#Ravens star CB Marlon Humphrey is suspected to be out for the season with a shoulder injury, per sources. A significant blow to Baltimore’s defense. Another one.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) December 6, 2021
Ravens fear CB Marlon Humphrey suffered a season-ending shoulder injury, a source confirmed. @RapSheet reported it first.
Baltimore has already lost two starters in secondary: CB Marcus Peters and SS DeShon Elliott.
— Jamison Hensley (@jamisonhensley) December 6, 2021
That is huge, especially considering the fact that they have played this entire season without their other starting cornerback, Marcus Peters. The Ravens had arguably the best starting cornerback tandem in the NFL. They have had to play with just half of them all season. If Humphrey’s shoulder injury indeed proves to be serious, they will have to play the final five games, while trying to hold on to the AFC North lead, with neither of them.
While Ravens head coach John Harbaugh did not go into detail about Humphrey’s injury, he did say after the game that he could be out a while. He also said that the Ravens’ lack of available cornerbacks at that time in the game was a key factor in his decision to attempt a two-point conversion at the end of the game to sneak off with a win, rather than play for overtime.
Baltimore has had absolutely horrible luck with injuries all year. their Reserve/Injured List includes names like J.K. Dobbins, Ronnie Stanley, Gus Edwards, DeShon Elliott, Derek Wolfe, Pernell McPhee, and the aforementioned Peters, amongst many others, like L.J. Fort and Justice Hill and Daelin Hayes.
Should they be without Humphrey, their cornerback room would be down to Jimmy Smith, Anthony Averett, Tavon Young, and Chris Westry. Smith is well past his prime.
Entering Sunday’s game, the Ravens had the worst secondary in the NFL, allowing over 275 yards per game. They allowed more 20-yard and more 40-yard passing plays than anybody else in the NFL. Now remove their best secondary defender, by far, from the equation.
While they held the best record in the AFC coming into this week at 8-3, they have not been a dominant team at all this season. They have a minus-nine turnover differential, third-worst in the NFL, and have allowed 24 more points than they have scored.
Their remaining schedule consists of road games against the Cleveland Browns and the Cincinnati Bengals, as well as home games against the Green Bay Packers, the Los Angeles Rams, and they wrap up the season hosting the Steelers. Could the division be on the line at that point?