Earlier today the Baltimore Ravens cut veteran CB Chris Johnson.
Johnson has mainly been a journeyman corner that had been released by the Oakland Raiders after the 2011 season. The Ravens picked up Johnson roughly half way through the 2012 season, due to injuries to Lardarius Webb and Jimmy Smith. Johnson made an immediate impact for the Ravens, as he forced a fumble in a pivotal game against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Heinz Field.
Johnson had hopes of competing with Chykie Brown for the number four corner spot on the roster, but he could get fully healthy during training camp. Brown is probably a shoe in for the spot, right behind Webb, Smith, and Corey Graham.
The release of Johnson opens up opportunities for some of the younger corners on the roster. Second-year corner Asa Jackson has looked very impressive in the teams first two preseason games; it’s unfortunate that he’s suspended the first eight games of the season for testing positive for Adderall. The Ravens will probably find some sort of creative way to keep Jackson around. Undrafted free agent Moe Lee has also been making a name for himself during training camp and the preseason, including an interception against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Marc Anthony was one of the Ravens’ seventh round picks, and he’ll look to get one of the backup spots as well, although he struggled badly in the first game against the Buccaneers. My hunch is that Lee and Anthony will get the final couple of spots, while Jackson is stashed away on the practice squad.
Of course, if there are a lot of injuries like last year then Johnson could always come back. No offense to Johnson, but let’s hope that doesn’t happen.