Ravens rookie WR Rashod Bateman activated, will debut Sunday vs. Chargers; OL Tyre Phillips also back

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Ravens rookie wide receiver Rashod Bateman was activated off injured reserve Saturday, clearing the way for the first-round pick to make his NFL debut Sunday against the Los Angeles Chargers.

With starting wide receiver Sammy Watkins (thigh) ruled out, coach John Harbaugh said Friday that he expected Bateman, who’s practiced for the past three weeks, to play Sunday. The former Minnesota star missed the Ravens’ first five games after undergoing groin surgery in August. He last played in a game almost 11 months ago, catching four passes for 59 yards over Purdue in a Golden Gophers win on Nov. 11.


Offensive coordinator Greg Roman said Thursday that Bateman is “looking good,” but cautioned, “I don’t think we’re going to throw him into the fire for every play.”

“Rashod is going to have a long and fruitful career, and this is just the first step,” Roman said. “So we will integrate him into the plan when the time is right.”


The Ravens also activated Tyre Phillips from IR to their 53-man roster, giving the offensive line timely reinforcements. Phillips, who returned to practice ahead of the Ravens’ game Monday against the Indianapolis Colts, started at left guard in the team’s season opener before leaving with a knee injury. The Ravens placed rookie guard Ben Cleveland on IR on Tuesday with a short-term knee injury.

The Ravens also activated practice squad running back Le’Veon Bell and offensive tackle Andre Smith for Sunday’s game. Bell was called up for the Ravens’ Week 4 win over the Denver Broncos, rushing four times for 11 yards. Depending on Phillips’ availability, Smith will serve as the third tackle behind starters Alejandro Villanueva, who’s expected to play Sunday despite a knee injury, and Patrick Mekari.

The Chargers downgraded starting safety Nasir Adderley (hip) to out. Starting inside linebacker Drue Tranquill (chest) was ruled out Friday, and starting wide receiver Mike Williams (knee) is questionable after missing the week of practice.

Note: Colts tight end Jack Doyle was fined $10,815 for unnecessary roughness for shoving Ravens cornerback Tavon Young’s head into the ground late in the fourth quarter Monday. Young’s retaliation was penalized, but he was not fined.