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Ravens Insider: Who will be the Ravens’ backup quarterback? Here are some options, plus other free agents still worth pursuing.


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The AFC North suddenly has perhaps the best, or at least most intriguing, collection of quarterbacks of any division in football.

Nine-time Pro Bowl selection Russell Wilson will attempt to resurrect his career with the Pittsburgh Steelers after being cut loose by the Denver Broncos, while Chicago Bears castoff Justin Fields tries to pry the starting job from him. Joe Burrow and Deshaun Watson, meanwhile, are both returning from season-ending injuries with the Cincinnati Bengals and Cleveland Browns, respectively. And, of course, there’s the Ravens’ Lamar Jackson, coming off a second career NFL Most Valuable Player Award and looking to bounce back from a poor performance in the AFC championship game as he continues to seek an elusive first trip to a Super Bowl.

A less heralded move was that of now ex-Ravens backup quarterback Tyler Huntley bolting for the Browns, agreeing on Sunday to a one-year deal worth the veteran minimum.

Given how little Cleveland paid, it’s clear the Ravens had little interest in bringing back Huntley, one of their more than 20 unrestricted free agents entering the offseason, for a fifth year. Though he would have provided familiarity, that was perhaps the problem — Baltimore knew what it had.

Over the past three seasons, Huntley started 10 games for the Ravens while Jackson was injured and had a 3-7 record in that span. That included Baltimore’s AFC wild-card game against the Cincinnati Bengals in January 2023, when Huntley was stripped on third-and-goal from the 1-yard-line early in the fourth quarter and defensive end Sam Hubbard returned it 98 yards for the decisive touchdown. Signed by Baltimore as an undrafted rookie out of Utah in 2020, he completed 64.6% of his passes for 1,957 yards and eight touchdowns in the regular season.

Huntley now goes from a locker next to Jackson’s to backing up Watson and battling Jameis Winston and 2023 fifth-round pick Dorian Thompson-Robinson on the Browns’ depth chart.

But Huntley’s departure also raises a question: Who will be the Ravens’ No. 2 quarterback? Given Jackson’s injury history — he missed 10 games in 2021 and 2022 combined because of injury — it’s a pertinent question.

Currently, the only other quarterbacks on Baltimore’s roster are 2023 undrafted rookie Malik Cunningham and veteran Josh Johnson, who has played for an NFL-record 14 teams, turns 38 in May and last week re-signed for another year with the Ravens. Put another way, Baltimore will likely want to bolster that group through free agency and/or next month’s draft.

With several other holes to fill on the roster — including offensive tackle, outside linebacker and guard — adding another quarterback is far from the most pressing need, but it is one general manager Eric DeCosta will need to address, among others.

Here’s a look at who a few options could be at quarterback through free agency or the draft as well, and what other free agents at other positions the Ravens could still pursue.

Saints Vikings Football
Vikings quarterback Joshua Dobbs runs for a touchdown in front of Saints cornerback Alontae Taylor on Sunday.
Abbie Parr/AP
Quarterback Joshua Dobbs had an up-and-down 2023 season with the Cardinals and Vikings. (Abbie Parr/AP)


Joshua Dobbs

At 29, Dobbs has already played for seven organizations, including the Browns and Steelers. Last season, he led the Arizona Cardinals to a stunning 28-16 upset of the Dallas Cowboys in Week 3, but success in the desert was short-lived. He went 1-7 for Arizona, which included a loss to the Ravens and was traded to the Minnesota Vikings after Kirk Cousins suffered a season-ending Achilles injury. He came off the bench to lead the Vikings to a comeback victory over the Atlanta Falcons in November after not taking any reps during the week but was eventually benched two games later after struggling. In all, he had a record of 3-9 as a starter last season and threw 13 touchdowns with 10 interceptions. For his career, Dobbs has completed 62.2% of his passes for 2,290 yards, 15 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. He also has 496 career rushing yards.

Brian Hoyer

Hoyer, whose first three years in the league were as Tom Brady’s backup with the New England Patriots, led the Browns to a 6-3 start in his first year as an NFL starter in 2014 but he quickly faded with eight interceptions and just one touchdown his next four games. He signed a two-year, $10.5 million deal with the Houston Texans the following year and was again named the starter but was benched in the fourth quarter of the opener, ended up starting just nine games and has bounced around as a backup since. Last season, Hoyer appeared in three games for the Las Vegas Raiders, including one start, and completed 23 of 42 passes for 231 yards and no touchdowns with two interceptions.

Blaine Gabbert

The backup to Kansas City Chiefs star Patrick Mahomes last season, Gabbert started in their meaningless regular-season finale against the Los Angeles Chargers. In his first start since 2018, the 10th overall pick by the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2011 completed 15 of 30 passes for 154 yards with no touchdowns and one interception while also rushing for 46 yards in the 13-12 win.

Jordan Travis #13 of the Florida State Seminoles reacts after runing for a touchdown against the Wake Forest Demon Deacons during the first half of their game at Truist Field on Oct. 28, 2023 in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
The Ravens could take a flyer on former Florida State star quarterback Jordan Travis in the later rounds of next month’s NFL draft. (Grant Halverson/Getty)

Jordan Travis 

There’s always the possibility that the Ravens will turn to the later rounds of the draft for a quarterback. Travis, who starred at Florida State and was the 2023 Atlantic Coast Conference Player of the Year, guided the Seminoles to an 11-0 start and had them on the path to the College Football Playoff before a devastating season-ending ankle injury. At 6 feet, 1 inch tall and 212 pounds, Travis is an athletic passer who operates well off script. His fundamentals need work and he projects as a developmental prospect, but he is also recovering well, got out of the walking boot he was in a week before the scouting combine and said he expects to be ready to go for rookie minicamp in May or June. He also said he met with just about every team at the combine.

Other needs

Offensive tackle

There aren’t many options left on the free agent market without injury concerns or questions about their ability to start. The best option would likely be for the Ravens to focus on the draft, which has plenty of tackle depth. Then they can revisit the free agent market in another month or two, too. Best free agent options: Trent Brown, Mekhi Becton, Donovan Smith, Yosh Nijman

Edge rusher

While it seems likely the Ravens will turn to the draft to select another young edge rusher, as they have recently with Odafe Oweh and David Ojabo, they lack a veteran presence with Jadeveon Clowney and Kyle Van Noy both free agents. Bringing back one of them would make sense and Clowney, who had 9 1/2 sacks last season, would be the best option given his ability as a run defender, but he might be too expensive. Best free agent options: Clowney, Van Noy, Mike Danna, Yannick Ngakoue


With John Simpson a New York Jet and the Ravens letting Kevin Zeitler’s contract void, Baltimore will need to replace both guard spots. They have some internal options in Ben Cleveland, Malaesala Aumavae-Laulu and Andrew Vorhees, but a veteran free agent would be a good addition. There’s not much to pick from at this point, though, so the draft could be an option as well. Best free agent options: Zeitler, Dalton Risner, Greg Van Roten, Andrus Peat


The Ravens have Marlon Humphrey and Brandon Stephens, but they could use another starting-caliber player on the outside, especially if they want to use Humphrey inside. DeCosta is fond of saying the Ravens can never have too many cornerbacks and that proved out last season with a slew of injuries, including to Humphrey. Georgia’s Kamari Lassiter could be that player at the 30th overall pick in the draft, but it would be a surprise if the Ravens still didn’t add another veteran or two at some point, which could include re-signing Arthur Maulet. Best free agent options: Xavien Howard, Stephon Gilmore, Steven Nelson, Adoree’ Jackson

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