The Ravens got bad news Monday as safety DeShon Elliott suffered what appears to be a season-ending knee injury in the Week 6 win over the Bengals.
“It looks like he’s going to be out for the year, unfortunately,” Head Coach John Harbaugh said Monday. “Just way worse than we originally thought it was going to be and the doctors thought after the game. That’s preliminary, but it sounded like they were pretty confident.
“So we’ll have to find a replacement there and move forward.”
The Ravens have now lost two safeties – Elliott and Tony Jefferson – in as many weeks. Chuck Clark was the primary replacement for Jefferson against Cincinnati, playing all 59 snaps and wearing the green dot communication helmet.
However, Elliott played a career-high 27 snaps and made one tackle. He also had a nice play on a deep ball for Bengals wide receiver Tyler Boyd, dislodging the ball with a big hit.
It’s the second straight season-ending injury suffered by Elliott. The talented Texas product broke his arm in the Ravens’ fourth preseason game last year as a rookie.
Sunday’s game against the Bengals was Elliott’s first extended defensive opportunity (he had 15 snaps over three previous games). One of the team’s most impressive players and biggest defensive playmakers in summer practices, Elliott was eager to show what he could do in regular-season action.
If Elliott is moved to injured reserve, the Ravens will have had six defensive backs on the list: Elliott, Jefferson, Tavon Young, Brynden Trawick, rookie Iman Marshall and Fish Smithson. Cornerback Jimmy Smith (knee) has also missed five straight games.
Earl Thomas III and Clark are the Ravens’ only true safeties left, though Anthony Levine Sr., Justin Bethel and Maurice Canady can play there if needed. Canady, however, is also dealing with a hamstring injury that Harbaugh said is day-to-day, plus he’s a starting cornerback.
Baltimore did add defensive back A.J. Howard to the practice squad last week, thought Harbaugh indicated that they could go outside the organization for help.