The Baltimore Ravens are the biggest #NFL Week 1 favorites on the board at -9.5 as they host the rebuilding Houston Texans on Sept. 10. This news won’t change that spread, but it’s a minor break for the visitors as #RavensFlock Pro Bowl cornerback Marlon Humphrey is now likely to miss at least that game following foot surgery today, according to numerous reports.
The 27-year-old Humphrey has spent his entire career with the Ravens and reached his third Pro Bowl last year. He played all 17 games and finished with 71 tackles and single-season career-bests with three sacks and three interceptions (tied with 2019).
Humphrey and Kansas City’s L’Jarius Sneed were the only NFL defensive backs to have at least three picks and three sacks. In fact, Humphrey is the only defensive back with at least 10 forced fumbles and five picks since 2020. Since entering the NFL in 2017, Humphrey’s 71 passes defensed are the NFL’s sixth most.
The secondary is a bit thin already for the Ravens as Damarion Williams also likely will miss the start of the season and perhaps into October following ankle surgery. He played in 14 games as a rookie fourth-round pick, appearing on defense and special teams, and had 22 tackles, two passes defensed and a tackle for loss.
Jalyn Armour-Davis could thus slide into Humphrey’s spot. Armour-Davis was also a 2022 fourth-round pick (Baltimore had many fourth-round picks) out of Alabama (same school where Humphrey was an All-American) and barely played as a rookie.
Baltimore’s defense ranked Top 5 in four categories in 2022: No. 3 in points allowed per game (18.5), No. 3 in defensive red zone TD% (46.4), No. 3 in rushing yards per game (92.1) and No. 4 in third-down efficiency (34.9%).
There’s never a great time to be hurting in the secondary, but Houston had one of the NFL’s worst passing offenses last year and that’s not going to change at least early in 2023 with rookie No. 2 overall pick CJ Stroud expected to be the Week 1 starting QB – he looked terrible in his preseason debut – and 2022 top #WeAreTexans wideout Brandin Cooks traded in the offseason to Dallas. The Ravens definitely will need all healthy hands on deck Week 2 in Cincinnati.