BALTIMORE — Six days after struggling in his return from last season’s serious ankle injury that required two surgeries, Ravens left tackle Ronnie Stanley was deactivated for Sunday night’s showdown with Kansas City.
Stanley, 27, had missed the entire practice week and appeared highly unlikely to play against the Chiefs as speculation persists about his status moving forward. Head coach John Harbaugh declined to answer questions about Stanley on both Wednesday and Friday, making it clear there was concern about the condition of his left ankle.
As anticipated, the Ravens were preparing to move right tackle Alejandro Villanueva to the left side, the position he played in Pittsburgh from 2015-20. Utility lineman Patrick Mekari was set to make the start at right tackle with veteran Andre Smith — elevated from the practice squad on Saturday — serving as the swing tackle. Second-year offensive lineman Tyre Phillips likely would have factored into the tackle mix if he hadn’t landed on injured reserve with a knee injury sustained in the season opener. With Phillips out, Ben Powers stepped into the starting lineup at left guard.
The Ravens also deactivated veteran cornerback Jimmy Smith (ankle), who has missed back-to-back games to open 2021 despite practicing on a limited basis since the start of the regular season. Baltimore had hoped to have a healthy Smith available to try to help slow Kansas City’s six-time Pro Bowl tight end Travis Kelce, but the 33-year-old Smith missed a month of training camp after injuring his right ankle in early August and apparently wasn’t quite ready.
With Smith inactive and Chris Westry placed on IR earlier this week, the Ravens had just four cornerbacks active against the high-scoring Chiefs: starters Marlon Humphrey and Anthony Averett, nickel Tavon Young, and practice-squad elevation Kevon Seymour. The Ravens only signed Seymour on Wednesday, but rookie safeties Brandon Stephens and Ar’Darius Washington are also capable of playing the nickel spot.
Despite being listed as questionable on the final injury report, wide receivers Marquise Brown (left ankle) and Devin Duvernay (groin) were active for Sunday’s game. Brown appeared to move well during an early pre-game workout after returning to practice on a limited basis Friday morning.
The Ravens also deactivated outside linebacker Daelin Hayes (knee), defensive end Derek Wolfe (back/hip), and defensive tackle Broderick Washington for Week 2. Wolfe was ruled out on Friday and hasn’t practiced since Aug. 23, leaving second-year defensive lineman Justin Madubuike to start in his place for a second straight week.
The Chiefs didn’t have anyone on their final game status injury report, quite a contrast from Baltimore’s brutal run of injuries over the last month.
Below were Sunday night’s inactives:
OT Ronnie Stanley
CB Jimmy Smith
OLB Daelin Hayes
DT Broderick Washington
DE Derek Wolfe
CB DeAndre Baker
DE Joshua Kaindoh
OL Austin Blythe
G Laurent Duvernay-Tardif
WR Daurice Fountain