Baltimore Ravens

Ravens long snapper Morgan Cox's reliability magnified by Eagles' problems at position

Few positions on the Ravens' depth chart lack a backup, but long snapper is one of those spots, and the identity of Morgan Cox's backup is a closely guarded secret.

Special teams coordinator Jerry Rosburg declined to name the emergency long snapper ("We hope not to see him," Rosburg would only say), and Cox followed suit.


"I don't know that I'm privileged to say that," he said with a smile. "You probably have to ask Jerry. If he'll answer it, then I'll support his decision. But I'd rather not say."

As silly as it might sound, grooming backup long snappers is an important development that was enhanced by what the Ravens' opponent endured Sunday.


The Philadelphia Eagles lost starter Jon Dorenbos to a wrist injury in the third quarter of an eventual 27-22 loss to the Washington Redskins on Sunday. Backup Brent Celek left with a stinger in the fourth quarter, and tight end Trey Burton was forced to finish the game as the long snapper.

The Ravens have had to scramble after injuries to Cox, who signed with the team as an undrafted rookie in 2010. When he tore his ACL in 2010, running back Willis McGahee was the emergency long snapper. When he suffered another ACL tear in 2014, defensive tackle Haloti Ngata filled in before the team signed Kevin McDermott for the full-time role.

But aside from those two instances, Cox has been a dependable presence at the position, and he said he prides himself on avoiding injury to help kicker Justin Tucker and punter Sam Koch.

"Continuity for Justin and Sam to be able to make kicks" is important, Cox said. "Obviously, you want to make them as comfortable as possible, and they work with me every day. So I hate having put the team in that position twice in my career, but injuries are part of the game, and I do my best to prevent them every day."

Cox's reliability provides Rosburg and the rest of the team with a certain level of comfort, which Rosburg intends to preserve.

"We hope to keep it that way," Rosburg said. "We have a contingency plan, but we have no intention of using it. For all players, everybody's got a backup. It's not different with our situation."