May 26, 2024

Josh Bynes Retires a Raven, Another Great Undrafted Linebacker

Josh Bynes, clad in his suit and tie following a job interview for an academic counseling position at an online university, was entering his parents’ home in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., when his phone rang. On the other end was Ozzie Newsome.

The former Ravens executive asked, “You want to be a Raven again? You been working out?” Bynes responded with a confident “Yes” to both questions. That marked the moment Bynes reentered the NFL. Fast forward twelve seasons, and Bynes recently declared his retirement as a Raven.

Josh Bynes Retires a Raven, Another Great Undrafted Linebacker

This Sunday at M&T Bank Stadium, during the Ravens’ game against the Los Angeles Rams, Bynes will be honored as the Legend of the Game. This recognition is part of a celebration of his remarkable career, which places him among the esteemed undrafted inside linebackers in Ravens history.

From 2011 to 2022, Bynes achieved success at various stops, including the Detroit Lions, Arizona Cardinals, and Cincinnati Bengals. However, his true football home was with the Ravens, where he spent a total of six seasons in three separate stints: 2011-2013, 2019, and 2021-2022.

In reflecting on his connection to the Ravens, Bynes expressed, “The Ravens have been home. The way they treat me, my family, there’s no place like it.”

Ravens Linebacker Josh Bynes Thriving In Familiar Surroundings - PressBox

Despite doubts about his NFL prospects, Bynes, who played a key role in Auburn’s college national championship, defied expectations with a 12-year career. He concluded his journey with 138 games played, including 82 starts, establishing himself not only as a tackling force but also as one of the most astute and respected leaders on the field.

Bynes, known for playing the game with integrity, highlighted his pride in perseverance. “I’ve been released, cut. I’ve been told I wasn’t good enough… I feel like I proved that for my entire 12 years.”

The Ravens gave Bynes his initial opportunity as an undrafted rookie in 2011. Although he didn’t make the team after his first training camp, a mid-season call from Newsome paved the way for his debut. Bynes faced challenges, including a cracked vertebra during training camp in 2012, but he overcame them to contribute significantly, particularly during the Ravens’ Super Bowl-winning season.

Throughout his career, Bynes acknowledged the influence of mentors like Ed Reed and fellow undrafted linebackers, emphasizing their role in his growth as a player. His connection to the Ravens reached its pinnacle in the final moments of Super Bowl XLVII when Bynes made the decisive tackle to secure victory.

After stints with the Lions and Cardinals, Bynes returned to the Ravens in 2019, making an impact with an interception in his first game back. A subsequent tenure with the Bengals showcased his resilience, followed by a return to the Ravens in 2021-2022.

Now 34, Bynes resides in the Atlanta area, focusing on his role as a father to his three boys. Although he misses the game, he hasn’t ruled out a future in coaching, expressing a strong interest in the possibility.

As Bynes joins the ranks of the Ravens’ undrafted inside linebackers in the franchise’s history, he fondly acknowledges the organization’s role in his success. “Coming back to Baltimore just always led to a lot of success. I definitely have a soft spot for that place.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *