The Baltimore Ravens officially waived wide receivers Jaylon Moore and Bailey Gaither, linebacker Diego Fagot and offensive tackle Jaryd Jones-Smith on August 23, per the NFL’s official transaction report.
Undrafted rookie receiver Slade Bolden was also waived with an injury designation, and running back Gus Edwards was placed on the Reserve/Physically Unable to Perform list to trim the Ravens’ roster to 80 players.
Bolden later revealed on Twitter that he will be undergoing surgery for a sports hernia this week, the same injury from which Ravens rookie tight end Charlie Kolar is currently recovering.
Unfortunately, I have been diagnosed with a sports hernia that requires surgery this week. With that being said, I’m ready to attack this process and get back on that field better than ever! Just a minor set back and I know the Lord still has a great plan for me. Joshua 1:9
— Slade Bolden (@_slade_10) August 23, 2022
Moore and Bolden occasionally flashed precise route-running and reliable hands in training camp, while Gaither’s biggest highlight was burning first-rounder Kyle Hamilton during a stadium practice on July 30.
Kyle Hamilton is a smart player who can diagnose a play in front of him quickly and break on the ball. That said, he can be a bit stiff in the hips as evidenced in his coverage efforts here against Bailey Gaither. pic.twitter.com/wYvxbthp8a
— Tony Lombardi (@RSRLombardi) August 1, 2022
The release of the trio of receivers is a clear indication that the Ravens are prioritizing size if they carry a sixth wide receiver on their roster.
Four undrafted receivers are competing for that potential roster spot, the shortest of whom is 6-foot-2 rookie Raleigh Webb out of The Citadel. Fellow rookies Makai Polk and Shemar Bridges are 6-foot-3 and 6-foot-4, respectively, and second-year wideout Binjimen Victor is 6-foot-4. Any one of the four could make the Ravens’ 53-man roster, though the recent arrival of ex-Chiefs wide receiver Demarcus Robinson could mean there’s no room left.
Jones-Smith, Fagot Also Waived
The Ravens also released undrafted rookie linebacker Diego Fagot and 26-year-old offensive tackle Jaryd Jones-Smith.
Fagot showed plenty of promise on special teams, constantly receiving praise from coaches in training camp and earning a 75.1 special teams grade from Pro Football Focus through two preseason games. He co-led the Ravens defense with four tackles against the Titans on August 11, but recorded just one on August 21 in Arizona.
21 of Fagot’s 28 preseason snaps came in pass coverage on his way to 44.1 overall defensive grade from PFF, the third-lowest grade among Baltimore’s defenders.
Fagot’s struggles in coverage likely contributed to his release, as the Ravens are looking for a coverage linebacker after the departure of Chris Board this offseason. Undrafted rookie linebacker Josh Ross is pushing for a roster spot after two excellent preseason performances earning him a 91.5 pass coverage grade on 26 snaps.
Jones-Smith spent most of the 2021 season on the Ravens’ practice squad and made three regular season appearances. He is the team’s first offensive line cut of the 2022 preseason, as the Ravens have been reluctant to part ways with any offensive lineman given their injuries at center and tackle.
But offensive tackle Ja’Wuan James has looked reliable in his first snaps in almost three years, answering one of Baltimore’s questions along the offensive line, and rookie center Tyler Linderbaum returned to practice this week, making Jones-Smith surplus to requirements in Baltimore.
Ravens’ Newest WR Will Play Saturday Vs. Commanders
Ravens head coach John Harbaugh told media that he expects recently-signed receiver Demarcus Robinson to play in the team’s upcoming preseason matchup with the Washington Commanders.
That will give Robinson a chance to get integrated in Baltimore’s offense, though he’s still unlikely to be catching any passes from Lamar Jackson, who sat out the Ravens’ first two preseason games.