Former Alabama, Raiders RB Finds New Home

Getty Running back Kenyan Drake #17 of the Alabama Crimson Tide runs for 58-yards in the fourth quarter against the Michigan State Spartans during the Goodyear Cotton Bowl

After being released by the Raiders on August 22, former Alabama star running back, Kenyan Drake is set to be picked up by the Baltimore Ravens as first reported by The NFL Network. The signing is still in progress as Drake will be subject to a physical before making it official with the Ravens, however Drake is already in Baltimore as reported by NFL Insider Josina Anderson. So all things appear to be on track for Drake to be wearing the purple and black for the upcoming season.

Ravens Running Back Room

The Ravens addition of Drake will be an attempt to shore up and bolster a somewhat shaky and banged up running back group. Starting running back J.K. Dobbins is questionable for Week 1 with a knee injury. Backup running back Gus Edwards is scheduled to miss at least the first four weeks of the regular season after he was placed on the physically unable to perform list.

Baltimore also has three other running backs to juggle as they bring in Drake. Veteran Mike Davis as well as Justice Hill and rookie from The University of Missouri Tyler Badie all had chances to impress during the preseason, however none of those three made a strong enough statement in their performances to lock in their position as a solid RB2. Davis carried the ball 13 times for 40 yards to average just slightly over three yards per carry. Neither Hill nor Badie broke the three yard average as they combined for 81 yards on 31 carries.

If last season is any indication of the type of attrition that can be experienced at the running back position, Baltimore is likely to subscribe to the philosophy that a team can never have enough backs to pick from as the season goes on.

Drake is Well Traveled

Drake was a stand out in Tuscaloosa where he played the 2012 through 2015 seasons. He racked up just shy of 1500 yards on the ground and also produced 18 touchdowns while averaging 6.4 yards per carry. Drake demonstrated his ability to catch the ball out of the backfield as he amassed 46 catches for 570 yards and four touchdowns in his career at Alabama.

Drake was selected in the third round of 2016 NFL draft as the number 73 overall selection by the Miami Dolphins. He played for Miami for three and a half seasons until he was traded to the Arizona Cardinals in October of 2019. Drake put up solid numbers for the Cardinals where he spent the remainder of the 2019 season as well as the entirety of the 2020 season. During his time in Arizona, Drake managed to score 18 touchdowns on nearly 1600 yards rushing. He also snagged 53 receptions for a total of 308 yards through the air.

After the 2020 season Drake was picked up by the Las Vegas Raiders who signed him to a two year contract worth $11 million guaranteed and up to as much as $14.5 million after incentives. Upon his arrival in Las Vegas, Drake would be paired up with another former Alabama running back, first round pick in the 2019 NFL draft, Josh Jacobs. Drake was having moderate success as the change of pace back in Las Vegas until his 2021 season was cut short due a broken ankle in December that forced him to miss the remainder of the season. He now looks to continue his success as he returns to the east coast as the newest member of the Baltimore Ravens.

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