Ravens lose two starters to season-ending injuries in Week 1, a year after being most-injured team ever tracked

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The Baltimore Ravens lost two key players for the season on Sunday.

Both left tackle Ja’Wuan James and cornerback Kyle Fuller have been ruled out for the season, the team confirmed. James tore his left Achilles tendon in their season-opening win against the New York Jets, which marks his second such injury in 16 months. Fuller tore his ACL in the game, too.

Last season, the Ravens were the most-injured team Football Outsiders' adjusted games lost metric has ever tracked going back to the 2001 campaign. Now it's distressingly more of the same.

Fuller went down late in the fourth quarter of the Ravens’ 24-9 win while trying to defend Jets receiver Elijah Moore. Moore pushed off Fuller before making a grab in the end zone, which sent Fuller to the ground immediately grabbing for his knee.

Moore was penalized on the play, and the touchdown was called back.

“He was playing good football, too,” coach John Harbaugh said of Fuller on Monday, via WJZ 13. “I think he really, really — he’ll tell you, he really loves it here. His mom’s here, and he just liked everything about what we were doing, and he fit in so well and was playing good ball in the game and really all camp … He’ll come back stronger than ever.

“It’s just one of those things. It’s just a crazy circumstance on astroturf. Got pushed off and just landed the wrong way on the turf, and turf doesn’t usually give as much as grass, so that’s what happened.”

Fuller had three tackles against the Jets before he went down.

Fuller had 51 total tackles last season with the Denver Broncos. The 30-year-old, who the Chicago Bears selected with the No. 14 overall draft pick in 2014, signed a one-year, $2.5 million deal with the Ravens this offseason.

James injured his Achilles in the second quarter on Sunday after he was pushed back by Jets rookie Michael Clemons and fell to the ground. He was eventually carted off the field, and Harbaugh confirmed the tear after the game.

James didn’t play during the 2020 season due to COVID-19, and then missed all of last year after he tore his left Achilles in May 2021. The 30-year-old is in the second year of his two-year, $4.5 million deal with the Ravens.

"It's a little bit of a different tear, it's off the bone," Harbaugh said Sunday. "It's not the one that is mid-tendon. He’s determined. He says he's in a way better place than he was last time, and he's determined to come back in time."

Baltimore Ravens' Kyle Fuller
Baltimore Ravens cornerback Kyle Fuller tore his ACL on Sunday in their win over the New York Jets. (AP/John Munson)