OWINGS MILLS, Md.– Baltimore Ravens running back Justin Forsett is already familiar with the team’s revamped offense installed by offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak.
Forsett played for Kubiak in the same system when both were with the Houston Texans. So Forsett is part player, part tutor when it comes to advanced knowledge about the details of the zone-stretch running play that represents the heart of the Kubiak system.
“The guys ask me any questions about any wrinkles or anomalies,” Forsett said. “I try to break it all down for them. I’ve been in this offense for a while now. I just want to stay sharp and not miss any opportunities.”
Forsett has made some impressive cuts in the open field, eluding defenders since joining the Ravens this spring via a one-year, $730,000 contract. He has also displayed sound hands out of the backfield and could figure into the Ravens’ plans as a third-down back and a change of pace on first downs.
The 5-foot-8, 197-pounder could prove especially valuable early in the season when star running back Ray Rice will miss the first two games while serving a two-game suspension for violating the NFL personal-conduct policy.
“Definitely, we all are going to be ready to pitch in,” said Forsett, who has rushed for 1,692 career yards and eight touchdowns with 115 receptions for 850 yards and one score. “We have a lot of talent and we’re excited to put it all together.”
On defense, Ravens inside linebacker Arthur Brown is running second on the depth chart behind rookie first-round pick C.J Mosley.
Brown is expected to divide playing time with Mosley, a consensus All-American selection last year who won the Butkus Award as the nation’s top linebacker.
“C.J.’s a great player who’s come in here and taken on a role and is learning fast,” Brown said. “He has the talent, so there’s a good opportunity for him. The coaches have said that it’s a competition and we all have to be ready. We’re interchangeable. I’m sure there will be playing time for both of us.”
After being drafted in the second round last year out of Kansas State, Brown spent the majority of his rookie season being utilized in pass coverage as a nickel linebacker. The former Big 12 Conference Defensive Player of the Year had 15 tackles, a half-sack and a forced fumble in 14 games last year.
“Absolutely, Arthur is playing better now than at any point last year,” linebackers coach Ted Monachino said. “As a cover linebacker, still can be dominant down-in and down-out, but as a run-game linebacker, he’s playing very well. What you see out of him is the result of a lot of great preparation in the offseason.”