Baltimore Ravens: Should Keep Taquan Mizzell on the 53-man roster

The Baltimore Ravens should consider keeping undrafted rookie running back Taquan Mizzell after the 53 man roster cuts this Saturday.

Prior to the Kenneth Dixon injury, I would not think Taquan Mizzell would make the roster. But with that injury, I think the undrafted rookie out of Virginia will have to compete with the 3rd year former 4th round pick out of USC Javorius “Buck” Allen for the 3rd running back spot as the Ravens usually do not keep four running backs on the roster. But with the uncertainty of Danny Woodhead’s health now and going forward, maybe the Baltimore Ravens will have to consider keeping both Buck Allen and Taquan “Smoke” Mizzell.

While both have played pretty well in the preseason rushing, I think Mizzell stands out in the passing game. At Virginia, the 5’10” 195 lb. senior running back has had a bigger factor in the passing game and in 2015, Mizzell had a career high 75 receptions for 721 yards and had 1,488 all purpose yards. Out of the backfield, Mizzell is a weapon and can be used that way in Baltimore on the ground but especially through the air.

In three preseason games, he has had 9 catches for 81 yards with 1 receiving touchdown. Mizzell has been a consistent option in the backfield and according to Pro Football Focus, Mizzell has had the most yards per route for running backs with 2.45 yards.

If Danny Woodhead can’t stay healthy, I think the Ravens should make this exception with Mizzell and keep four running backs on the roster. Even though Javorius Allen is also a bigger back and has experience, Mizzell shows more explosiveness and has more upside. Both are good pass catchers but the main competition will be at the 4th preseason game against the Saints on Thursday. But Mizzell has the slot receiver and special team capabilities that Allen does not have. And even though Allen has experience, he disappeared last year after a good rookie season receiving. I think Allen has had his chance and the Ravens should give Mizzell a shot to make the roster. But whoever has the best performance in the last preseason game will definitely have the edge in making the roster.

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Andrew Kim

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