The Baltimore Ravens thought their star tight end suffered an injury that ended his season in November.
But the team activated Mark Andrews off injured reserve Friday, making him active for the AFC championship.
In Week 11, he injured an ankle, and even head coach John Harbaugh thought the injury was “season-ending.”
The reported injury was a cracked fibula after a hip-drop tackle against the Cincinnati Bengals. At the time, Harbaugh said Andrews had an “outside chance” of returning this season with a “very serious ankle injury.”
The team opened Andrews’ 21-day window to return from IR just before the playoffs started. He was not yet ready for last week’s game, but he’s ready for Sunday.
“I’m feeling good. I’m going to help this team any way I can,” Andrews said. “Whatever they’re asking me to do, I’m going to do.”
“I can’t tell you how excited [I am]. This is what I love to do. I love to play football. I love the Ravens. I love this city. I’m going to give them everything I’ve got.”
Despite Andrews’ injury, the Ravens won six straight games, including the game in which he was hurt. Baltimore lost in Week 18 but rested just about everybody since it had the AFC’s top seed and a first-round bye clinched.
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Baltimore used a dominant second half to beat the Houston Texans, 34-10, in the divisional round last week.
Isaiah Likely has filled in nicely, catching 23 passes for 346 yards and six touchdowns for likely MVP Lamar Jackson since Andrews’ injury. But Baltimore will gladly welcome back the 2021 All-Pro.
Andrews likely would have made the fourth Pro Bowl of his career had he not been injured. In his first nine games, he had 43 receptions for 521 yards and six touchdowns, putting him on pace for the second-most yards in his career and the most touchdowns.
The Ravens will host the Kansas City Chiefs, who are playing in their sixth consecutive AFC championship. Baltimore has not made the Super Bowl since the 2012 season.
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