The Ravens asked Russell Shepard to work out alongside Dez Bryant and others this week, but he turned down their invite (Twitter link via Ian Rapoport of NFL.com). Instead, the wide receiver is “set to walk away and is not planning to play in 2020.”
Shepard, it seems, is ready to move on from football altogether. The 30-year-old spent the first five years of his career in the NFC South, playing for the Bucs and Panthers before inking a one-year deal with the Giants in 2018. The former undrafted free agent was always more of a special teams player than an offensive force. Statistically, his best season came in 2016 when he set career highs in catches (23) and yards (341). His first season in New York/New Jersey wasn’t much different – he notched just ten grabs for 188 yards and two scores. Last year, he landed on IR after just three games.
That’s one less wide receiver option for the Ravens, but they’ll still consider Bryant and Dwayne Harris, a fellow ex-Giant who also showed his stuff for the team this week. There was some talk of the Ravens signing Antonio Brown, but they’ve formally shut the door on him, despite the endorsement of Lamar Jackson.