On Wednesday March 9, 2022, the Baltimore Ravens announced that they have tendered six of their exclusive rights free agents, a list headlined by quarterback Tyler Huntley.
Huntley, 24, is a former undrafted free agent (Utah) who is entering his third year in the league. In 2021 he appeared in seven games and made four starts in place of Lamar Jackson, rallying the Ravens to a 16-13 comeback win over the Bears in his first career start. But he finished the year with a 1-3 record, completing 122 of 188 passes for 1,081 yards, including three touchdown passes and four interceptions. He also rushed the ball 47 times for 294 yards and two touchdowns, as per Pro Football Reference.
Also receiving tenders on March 9:
C Trystan Colon
S Geno Stone
LB Kristian Welch
RB Ty’Son Williams
LS Nick Moore
Trystan Colon, 23, is a former undrafted free agent out of Missouri who made two starts as a rookie in 2020 and appeared in 12 games (one start) in 2021. He could be in the mix to challenge for a starting job, if Bradley Bozeman leaves in free agency and the Ravens don’t use a high draft pick on an elite center prospect like Tyler Linderbaum.
Safety Geno Stone appeared in 15 games last year and made one start, recording 21 tackles and an interception of Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger in the season-finale.
For his part, linebacker Kristian Welch played in 16 games in 2021, with almost all of his action coming on special teams.
As for running back Ty’Son Williams, he had 35 carries last year for 185 yards and a touchdown, plus nine receptions for 84 yards, this according to Pro Football Reference.
Nick Moore, 29, is expected to remain the team’s long snapper for the second year in a row, having served in that capacity for all 17 games last year.
Ravens Re-Sign Defensive Tackle Aaron Crawford
Meanwhile, the Ravens announced that they have re-signed defensive tackle Aaron Crawford, 24, who originally joined the team as a rookie undrafted free agent in 2020 out of North Carolina. He spent most of his rookie season on the practice squad, though he did appear in one game (at Pittsburgh, when the Ravens were shorthanded due to COVID-19) and recorded one assisted tackle.
The Ravens brought him back on a one-year Reserve/Futures contract in January 2021 but he was waived injured on August 31, 2021, and spent the year on injured reserve.
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Offensive Tackle Alejandro Villanueva Has Retired
On Wednesday March 9, the Ravens also announced that offensive tackle Alejandro Villanueva, 33, has decided to retire after eight years in the NFL. The team went on to place Villanueva on its reserve/retired list, saving the Ravens $6 million in salary cap space in 2022, but also triggering a dead money cap charge of $3.25 million, as per overthecap.com.
The Ravens signed Villanueva to a two-year, $14 million contract in May 2021, though the former Army Ranger admitted that his options in free agency were “not plenty.” He struggled during training camp and then suffered through a disastrous debut with his new team while playing right tackle.
He moved to left tackle the next week and managed to give the Ravens 16 more starts, exhibiting the same kind of durability that he demonstrated throughout his career. As noted by Pro Football Reference, after starting 10 games for Pittsburgh in 2015 he started all 16 games at left tackle for five consecutive years, earning Pro Bowl honors in 2017 and 2018.
Cornerback Tavon Young Won’t Be Back Either
Also not returning to the Ravens is cornerback Tavon Young, who was released on March 9. The former fourth-round pick (2016) appeared in 50 games and made 24 starts in the years since, having recorded 127 total tackles, 12 passes defensed and four interceptions.
As per Jeff Zrebiec of The Athletic, the team also declined to tender restricted free agent cornerback Chris Westry, though “(the Ravens) are still interested in re-signing him and the two sides will continue to talk.”
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