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Baltimore Ravens Sign Former Fourth-Round Pick

The Ravens made news earlier this week when they signed a former fourth-rounder. He joins the team on their practice squad after visiting with the team.

The Baltimore Ravens have signed fourth-round pick Kyler Fackrell to their practice squad. Mike Garafolo of NFL Network reported the news on Tues after a two-day visit with the team. Fackrell recently signed with the Las Vegas Raiders but was released in late August after having been placed on season-ending injured reserve.

With Tyus Bowser and rookie David Ojabo rehabbing Achilles’ injuries, the Baltimore Ravens are noticeably thin at outside linebacker. Vince Biegel and Daelin Hayes are also injured while the only healthy pass rushers are Odafe Oweh and Justin Houston. Fackrell is a solid veteran with experience in the NFL who will be used heavily in the Baltimore Ravens rotation. 

A Brief History Of New Ravens Linebacker, Kyler Fackrell

Fackrell was a former third-round pick out of Utah State to the Green Bay Packers where he played four seasons. In his two seasons, Fackrell would only muster five sacks and seven tackles for a loss while only starting in two games. However, in 2019 Fackrell would have a breakout year after mustering 10.5 sacks, 12 tackles for a loss, and 42 total tackles while starting in seven games.

Fackrell would be unable to follow up on his 2019 success and only managed one sack without starting a single game. As such, Fackrell would depart from Green Bay after the 2019 season, signing a one-year deal with the New York Giants. He would improve his numbers to four sacks but ended the year on injured reserve.

New York opted not to bring back Fackrell and instead, he took his talents to the Chargers where he played sparingly before being put on injured reserve. They would release him which put him on the path to the Las Vegas Raiders. Fackrell was constantly surrounded by elite talent and struggled to see the field full-time as a starter despite being a steady veteran. 

Finding A Fit For New Ravens Linebacker Kyler Fackrell

As mentioned above, Fackrell should be expected to play a sizable role as a rotational pass rusher given the injuries on the Ravens’ front seven. This shouldn’t signal that they’re looking for another starter however injuries are not unlikely to occur. Oweh and Houston are entrenched as the starters so for right now, Fackrell is likely the third man in their rotation if he’s called up. 

Even so, Fackrell does have a history of injuries and that may be a concern for the Baltimore Ravens throughout the season. Per Rotoworld, Fackrell dealt with a hamstring issue throughout the season. And According to Fox Sports, Fackrell missed time in 2019 due to a rash of shoulder injuries that left him “questionable” to play in a few games. In 2020, Fackrell suffered from a neck injury while also dealing with calf and lower leg ailments. Last year, Fackrell dealt with a knee injury that eventually required surgery late in the season.

Although playing in a reduced role will likely limit the potential for injury, it’s worth noting this aspect of Fackrell’s history. Obviously one should hope for nothing major to occur, however, if his luck turns sour the Baltimore Ravens could find themselves in need of another edge. This could be a situation where the Ravens call up Steven Means and Jeremiah Moon from the practice squad or through free agency.

Fackrell’s go-to is the speed to power where he can use his length to reach around the edge and separate. He still possesses plenty of torque through his lower half which allows him to play through his opponents and turn a corner. Despite this, he’s still never going to be a fluid athlete, especially at this stage in his career.

Even so, Fackrell can still play and is even a threat in the run game. There are multiple instances throughout his playing career of him defeating tight ends. He can generate plenty of power out of his stance and manages to stay relatively disciplined with his gap integrity on the outside.

Fackrell isn’t the biggest signing the Baltimore Ravens have made but if he can stay healthy, he will be a solid role player. 

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