Dez Bryant is not your ordinary practice squad player. His signing created more headlines than practice squad signees usually do, and the Ravens wasted no time putting him to work. It may have been just three practices so far this week, but count head coach John Harbaugh among those impressed with the 8-year NFL veteran.
“He was doing Chase Claypool on scout team and did a great job of it,” Harbaugh said on Friday. “Thought he had a good week. It’s only three practices in after quite a layoff but looked good. He’s excited, we had a great talk before practice.”
“He’s excited and he’s going hard and I thought he acquitted himself very well.”
The Ravens signed Bryant, who hasn’t played in the NFL since 2017, to the practice squad last week. Standing at 6-foot-2, the former first-round pick gave Baltimore’s defense a look at what they will be up against in 6-foot-4 Claypool, who has six total touchdowns in his rookie season for the Steelers.
For now, Bryant’s main goal is to help get the Ravens defense ready, but it’s a role that could grow over time. His resume has three Pro Bowl selections, 531 receptions and 73 receiving touchdowns on it, enough to get quarterback Lamar Jackson excited about the possibilities down the line.
“Oh man, it’s tremendous,” Jackson said earlier this week. “We just got to see if he’s ready, see what he’s capable of and go from there.”