OWINGS MILLS, Md. — Tyler Huntley was cleared of concussion protocol, making him the obvious choice to start as a quarterback for the Baltimore Ravens in Cleveland on Saturday.
But Ravens head coach John Harbaugh declined to pick their first quarterback on Friday.
“As for injuries, I’m not going to talk too much about it,” Harbaugh said after Friday’s practice. “I think everything will be clear when you see the injury report in terms of who is what. That will be our statement.”
All indications are pointing to the Ravens starting Huntley, who have been training all week after they pulled out due to concussion protocol from a 16-14 win at Pittsburgh on Sunday. Baltimore’s #1 quarterback Lamar Jackson has not practiced since he sprained his knee on Dec.
Huntley, who said he did not experience any symptoms, announced that he was ready to start a second week in a row.
“I don’t think I’ve had a concussion,” Huntley said on Friday. “The protocols were doing their job to make sure I was safe. Frankly, I’m safe enough to play this week.”
Huntley was removed from Sunday’s game against Pittsburgh in the middle of the third quarter, when Steelers safety Minkah Fitzpatrick’s elbow nailed Huntley to a quarterback goalie with a bad shot. According to Huntley, after an independent concussion spotter was called, he was sent to the medical tent next door for evaluation.
Huntley then went to the locker room and was removed from the game.
Ravens offensive coordinator Greg Roman said on Wednesday that Huntley looked “great” after the game.
“When you approve that protocol, I guess [we’ll be] all systems go,” said Roman.
Huntley said Wednesday night he approved the protocol. He fully participated in Wednesday’s practice, but a few more tests followed.
This will be the second week Huntley has kicked off, replacing Jackson, who missed six practices in a row. Baltimore’s other options at quarterback are on the practice roster: impromptu rookies Anthony Brown and Brett Hundley, who finished Sunday’s game.
If Huntley plays, it will be interesting if he changes his running style. Over the past two weeks, Huntley has hit 31.8% of his games, just behind New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones (34.6%).
Roman said he had a “nice chat” about trying to reduce the amount of contact he had with Huntley.
“I’m an aggressive player. I try to score the first shot or goal with every shot,” Huntley said. “He just told me to skate. It’s something I’ll try to work on.”
Huntley has completed 79.5% (35 out of 44) of his 275-yard passes this season. 65.1 He did not score any goals for the overall QBR and made an interception. Huntley also rushed for 72 yards and scored a touchdown in 19 innings.
The Ravens (9-4) have won six of their last seven games and finished first in the North AFC. According to ESPN’s Football Power Index, Baltimore’s chance to win the league jumps to 78% with a Cleveland win (5-8) and drops to 52% with a loss.