It's official: Six-time Pro Bowl safety Ed Reed and three-time Pro Bowl linebacker/special teams ace Brendon Ayanbadejo have been activated from the Physically Unable to Perform list, the Ravens announced today.
To make room for Reed and Ayanbadejo on the 53-man roster, the Ravens have placed offensive tackle Jared Gaither on Injured Reserve with a back injury, and have cut linebacker Edgar Jones.
Reed and Ayanbadejo will make their 2010 season debuts this Sunday against the Bills. Here's why this was the perfect time for the Ravens to activate both of these guys.
For Gaither, being put on IR ends a rocky and frustrating season, and likely ends his time in Baltimore. The fourth-year tackle, who was a supplemental fifth-round pick in 2007, was expected to be the Ravens' starting right tackle this season with Michael Oher moving to left tackle.
But Gaither showed up to training camp nearly 30 pounds lighter than his 2009 playing weight, and almost immediately suffered an injury to the thoracic disc in his back. To the frustration of both Gaither and the team, the injury lingered into the regular season, and Gaither has only been able to practice once since Aug. 5.
With Gaither showing no progress the last few weeks, the Ravens had no choice but to put the 24-year-old on Injured Reserve to open up a roster spot for someone who could contribute.
It would be surprising to see the Ravens re-sign Gaither this offseason. His injury history and questionable work ethic have been issues in Baltimore, and his desire to play left tackle will likely take him elsewhere.
Jones was signed by the Ravens as an undrafted free agent in 2007. The jack-of-all-trades had appeared in 32 games in four seasons for Baltimore, as a tight end, defensive end, outside linebacker and special teams performer.