Ex-Towson WR Sheppard joins practice squad

Ex-Towson WR Sheppard joins practice squad
September 2, 2013, 3:45 pm
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Marlon Brown excited to make Ravens roster

The Ravens have signed former Towson wide receiver Gerrard Sheppard and former Notre Dame running back Jonas Gray to the team's practice squad.

The Ravens already had signed seven players to the practice squad, and to make room for both Sheppard and Gray on the eight-member squad, the Ravens released practice squad offensive tackle Jordan Devey.

Sheppard was with the Ravens in training camp as an undrafted free agent, but could never quite climb up the depth chart in a crowded, competitive group that included fellow rookies Aaron Mellette and Marlon Brown.

Gray, a 5-foot-10, 225-pound running back, originally signed as an undrafted free agent with the Dolphins last season but spent the entire season on injured reserve with a torn ACL. He carried 40 times for 107 yards and two touchdowns and had five receptions for 39 yards this preseason with Miami, but did not make the Dolphins' 53-man roster.

Gray, who was with the Ravens on Tuesday, said that this preseason, "after taking a year off from football, I think I showed a lot of the things I did in college – my physicality, my toughness, my nose for the end zone. I showed good things, but I’m not close to reaching my potential.”

Not counting the fullbacks, The Ravens kept only two running backs on their 53-man roster -- Ray Rice and Bernard Pierce -- so Gray, a considered power back who can also catch balls out of the backfield, was added presumably as a third back who could be called up to the active roster in the event of an injury to either Rice or Pierce. The Ravens had hoped to have Bobby Rainey on the practice squad in that role, but after the Ravens waived Rainey in the final cutdown, he was signed off waivers by the Cleveland Browns.