Quarterback Lamar Jackson is officially questionable for the Ravens’ game against the Green Bay Packers Dec. 19, but he missed his third straight practice Friday and appears unlikely to play as he recovers from an ankle injury sustained a week earlier at Cleveland.
Jackson headlines a lengthy injury report for the Ravens (8-5), who cling to a one-game lead in the AFC North with four games to play. Ben Powers, who has started the last 12 games at left guard, has been ruled out with a foot injury, defensive end Calais Campbell (thigh) is doubtful, and eight players including Jackson are listed as questionable.
And that list does not even include safety Chuck Clark and reserve center Trystan Colon, who are on the league’s reserve/COVID-19 list. According to the league’s revised COVID protocols, there is still a chance they could be available.
The Ravens have been coy about Jackson’s status this week, with head coach John Harbaugh calling Jackson “day to day” and offensive coordinator Greg Roman saying Jackson is “a good healer.”
On Friday, Harbaugh said, “I’d say [Jackson] has a chance. … If he starts feeling good and everything is all right, we’ll check him out, probably pregame.”
But Jackson missed practice all week, Tyler Huntley took the first-team reps and the Ravens signed veteran quarterback Josh Johnson off the New York Jets’ practice squad this week.
Huntley’s only career start came in a 16-13 win at Chicago Nov. 21 that Jackson missed with an illness. Huntley and the Ravens struggled to get the offense in gear for much of the game, but then they embarked on a 72-yard scoring drive in the final two minutes to rally for the win.
This past week at Cleveland, Huntley replaced the injured Jackson early in the second quarter and after falling behind, 24-3, the Ravens nearly rallied all the way back before losing, 24-22. Huntley finished 27-for-38 for 270 yards and one touchdown and ran six times for 45 yards.
But two of the most critical plays in that game were turnovers by Huntley — a strip-sack by Browns defensive end Myles Garrett that he returned for a touchdown, and a fumble lost by Huntley with the Ravens in field-goal range.
Huntley said after watching the tape of the game, the issue of ball security jumped out.
“We get at least some points on those two drives, we win the game,” he said.
The offensive line is also banged up this week, with Powers ruled out and tackles Alejandro Villanueva (knee), Patrick Mekari (hand) and Tyre Phillips (illness) all listed as questionable. Villanueva and Phillips each missed two practices this week, and Mekari, who missed the Cleveland game last week, has been limited all week.
With Powers out, rookie Ben Cleveland might get his first career start.
If Colon does not return from the COVID list, the Ravens will likely call up center Adam Redmond as a practice squad elevation to back up Bradley Bozeman, one of the few healthy linemen.
On defense, Clark could miss a game for just the second time in his five-year career. In Clark’s absence, Geno Stone could be in line for his first start, and veteran Jimmy Smith could get some action at safety as well.
Clark’s absence would also mean the Ravens would be without their entire presumed starting secondary in the preseason — cornerbacks Marcus Peters and Marlon Humphrey, Clark and safety DeShon Elliott — with reigning league MVP Aaron Rodgers coming to town.
Rodgers, who has been dealing with a toe injury, did not practice this week but is not listed on the injury report for the Packers (10-3), who have scored at least 30 points in each of their past three games.
Here is the full, final injury report:
OUT: G Ben Powers (foot)
DOUBTFUL: DE Calais Campbell (thigh)
QUESTIONABLE: TE Nick Boyle (knee), WR Marquise Brown (illness), QB Lamar Jackson (ankle), T Patrick Mekari (hand), T Tyre Phillips (illness), FB Patrick Ricard (back/knee), T Alejandro Villanueva (knee), CB Chris Westry (knee)
OUT: T David Bakhtiari (knee), TE Dominique Dafney (ankle), G/T Billy Turner (knee)
DOUBTFUL: WR Equanimeous St. Brown (concussion)
QUESTIONABLE: WR Malik Taylor (abdomen), WR Marquez Valdes-Scantling (back)
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