Keep an Eye on Cierre Wood
With new speculation that Ray Rice may face a stiff suspension, there is even more reason to pick apart the Raven’s backfield. With most of the talk so far being confined to Bernard Pierce, Lorenzo Taliaferro and even Justin Forsett, we’d like to remind folks not to count out Cierre Wood. We think all four backs bring something to the table. Both Forsett and Wood have significant time in the Ravens' new offense. Bernard Pierce is probably the most explosive of the group. While we are not huge fans of Taliaferro, the Ravens like him, and he has some size and strength to go with some all-around ability.
Here’s what we had to say about a Wood heading into last year’s training camp…
“He’s in a fight for a job this year, but we suspect that he will land a job somewhere if he does get let go in Houston. Wood, based on what we see on film, is an NFL running back in terms of ability. He just needs to find an opportunity. With an aging Arian Foster and with Ben Tate likely to test free agency in 2014, Wood could find daylight with Texans in the coming years. We’re very surprised that Wood didn’t get drafted. He’s big and athletic and has a lot of the skills that transfer well to the next level. He could have a very nice future in Houston if he can stick and learn the offense. He’s worth a spot on dynasty rosters for sure.”
Wood was on and off the roster in 2013 and ended up signing with the Ravens, which just happens to be where his HC landed as OC. The fact that Wood’s rookie season was spent learning Gary Kubiak’s offense is obviously a significant plus. It would be a mistake, at this point, to count Wood out of this competition.