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Ravens playing time trends through eight games

FootballBaltimore RavensCleveland BrownsTerrell SuggsCourtney UpshawHouston Texans

Now that the Ravens have officially finished up the first half of their schedule, let’s take a look at the snap counts for their players over the first eight games of the season -- and since we last checked on these totals a month ago -- to see which new trends are developing. These official snap counts come courtesy of the NFL.

--- Two weeks after he played 44 snaps in his early return from a torn Achilles tendon, Ravens rush linebacker Terrell Suggs was on the field for 54 defensive snaps -- 77 percent of them -- in Sunday’s 25-15 win over the Cleveland Browns. Only six Ravens defenders played more snaps, and none were fellow outside linebackers.

--- Since Suggs returned, outside linebackers Courtney Upshaw and Albert McClellan have seen their playing time decrease. Upshaw, a 2012 second-round draft pick, has played 79 snaps the past two games, including some as a defensive lineman in the nickel package. McClellan has played just 39 snaps in those two games. Meanwhile, Paul Kruger started against the Browns and has played 110 snaps with Suggs back in the mix.

--- Inside linebackers Jameel McClain and Dannell Ellerbe have played all 150 snaps since Ray Lewis tore his triceps in the Week 6 win over the Dallas Cowboys. Brendon Ayanbadejo, the other inside backer on the depth chart, played solely on special teams.

--- The Ravens have continued to rotate players on the defensive line. Rookie DeAngelo Tyson is the newest addition to the rotation, playing 43 snaps the past two games. Defensive end Arthur Jones played 62 snaps against the Texans and got the start on Sunday with Pernell McPhee inactive, but he played just 39 snaps. With Ma'ake Kemoeatu back in the lineup against the Browns, nose tackle Terrence Cody played just 18 snaps. He has played 209 of the team’s 627 defensive snaps this season, a disappointment for the 2010 second-round pick. Defensive tackle Bryan Hall played 21 snaps against the Texans, his only action so far this season.

--- Cornerback Corey Graham, who played just seven defensive snaps in the first four games, has played 89 snaps as the nickel cornerback since Lardarius Webb was placed on injured reserve.

--- Graham has been a fixture on special teams, playing 161 snaps, but four players have played more. Safety Sean Considine leads the way with 197, followed by Ayanbadejo (183), James Ihedigbo (182), and cornerback Chykie Brown (166). Running back Anthony Allen, who has been active over Bobby Rainey because of his special teams prowess, has played 160 snaps on specials.

--- You might be surprised by this, but Dennis Pitta has played only six more snaps than fellow tight end Ed Dickson. I often get asked why Dickson isn’t more involved, but he is out there a fair amount, usually as a blocker and not a pass-catcher. And actually, over the past four games, Dickson played 147 snaps and Pitta played 139.

--- Wide receiver Jacoby Jones has not played more than 22 snaps in a game since the Week 4 win over the Browns. In the first four games, he averaged 30.5 snaps per game. Tandon Doss played 44 snaps in the first four and 34 in the next four. That’s partially because starters Torrey Smith and Anquan Boldin rarely take a breather, playing 495 and 474 offensive snaps, respectively.

--- Since taking over for Ramon Harewood at left guard in Week 6, Bobbie Williams has played every offensive snap for the Ravens. Harewood hasn't played since losing his starting spot. Meanwhile, second-year lineman Jah Reid, who was expected to see some time at left guard Sunday, played nine snaps, but none were at left guard. He filled in for Marshal Yanda for a few plays at right guard and got snaps in the team's heavy package.

--- All-Pro fullback Vonta Leach played a season-high 44 snaps in Sunday's victory over Cleveland. It was just the second time this season that Leach was on the field for more than half of Baltimore’s offensive snaps.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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FootballBaltimore RavensCleveland BrownsTerrell SuggsCourtney UpshawHouston Texans
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