The Baltimore Ravens will take on the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 18. While a shot at the AFC North is no longer on the table due to some rule changing by the NFL in a special circumstance, the Ravens still have a shot at hosting a playoff game. With a win, a Los Angeles Chargers win and a win in a coin toss vs. the Bengals, Baltimore would play Cincinnati again next week in the Wild Card round of the NFL playoffs. As they prepare for a playoff berth, the Ravens will rest starting running back JK Dobbins in Week 18, per ESPN’s Jamison Hensley.
Dobbins has dealt with injuries this season and has only played in eight games. He has 92 carries for 520 yards with two touchdowns. Dobbins wasn’t ever heavily involved in the passing game and only has seven receptions on eight targets for 42 yards and a touchdown. This decision comes as the Ravens may also be turning to third-string quarterback Anthony Brown with starter Lamar Jackson and backup Tyler Huntley also dealing with injuries. Hosting a playoff game is nice, but giving your team extra rest to increase the chance of a playoff win is the focus.
With Dobbins sidelined, some combination of Gus Edwards, Justice Hill and/or Kenyan Drake will be used. Edwards has played in eight games and has 417 yards on 83 carries with three touchdowns. Hill has played in 14 games but only has 42 carries for 228 yards with a touchdown and has brought in all 12 of his targets for 58 additional yards. Drake has been a healthy scratch of late but has played in 11 games for the Ravens this season. He is second on the team with 92 carries and has 422 yards with three touchdowns. Drake finds himself with the most receiving work of any running back and has 15 receptions on 21 targets for 70 yards and another score.