Baltimore Ravens tight end Owen Daniels didn't practice on Wednesday, as per the team's official injury and practice report. The injury is listed as a "knee". Like many veterans across the league, Daniels usually receives veteran rest days but according to ESPN, the reason being a "knee" is a first. Per the Carroll County Times, Daniels "limped off the field at one point during the Ravens 29-7 win over the Atlanta Falcons." He would later return and post six grabs for 58 yards.
Daniels, who signed a one-year deal worth $1 million (with another $1 million via incentives) during the offseason after an eight-year career in Houston, has caught 27 passes with 275 yards receiving and three touchdowns this season.
In his last meeting against Cincinnati, Daniels generated 34 yards on four receptions and wasn't even the biggest threat at tight end. Dennis Pitta caught 10 passes for 83 yards during Baltimore's regular season opener against the Bengals. However, Pitta suffered a season-ending hip dislocation against the Cleveland Browns in week three.
Cincinnati has met a troubling issue with tight ends recently. From Rob Gronkowski and Tim Wright (combined for 11 receptions, 185 yards receiving and two touchdowns), to Greg Olsen, Coby Fleener and even Dwayne Allen, who burnt 260-pounds worth of rubber against Cincinnati on a 32-yard touchdown reception, the Bengals are struggling. Cincinnati has allowed 50 yards or more receiving to seven tight ends this season and four touchdowns in the last three games.
One reason could be their injury situation at linebacker. Players like Vincent Rey have stepped into a primary role while starters and passing-down backers have recovered from recent injuries. Quarterbacks have targeted 26 passes against players that Rey was covering. The linebacker has allowed a 65.4 completion percentage for 120 yards, along with a touchdown and an opposing quarterback rating of 100. In fairness to Rey, he's hardly the only one struggling in Cincinnati's passing defense. Rey Maualuga, who is currently dealing with a severe hamstring injury, has an opposing quarterback rating of 143.2. Emmanuel Lamur, rehabilitating from a shoulder injury, has an opposing quarterback rating of 91.7, but allowed a 70 percent completion rate and at least three passes of more than 20 yards. Every linebacker has allowed at least one touchdown (though not necessarily to tight ends). Even Burfict, who has defended 12 passes and allowed 10 receptions has an opposing quarterback rating of 124.7.
A breakdown on how opposing tight ends are doing against Cincinnati's defense: