Washington (AFP) - Stanley Jean-Baptiste, an American son of Haitian immigrants and four-year NFL journeyman, suffered another heartbreak Friday, learning he will miss the entire 2018 season with a broken right arm.
The 28-year-old cornerback appeared set to make the Baltimore Ravens roster after a stellar exhibition campaign but was injured in Baltimore's 30-20 pre-season home triumph Thursday over Washington.
The Ravens placed him on the injured reserve list, keeping his rights but ensuring he won't play in 2018 no matter how quickly he recovers.
"It's a tough thing, but I believe everything happens for a reason," Jean-Baptiste said. "I can't put my mind around it, why it's happening. But it is. I just have to take it a day at a time."
It was another heartbreak for a player who saw little action in four games with New Orleans in his 2014 debut season, then struggled on practice squads with Detroit, Seattle, Kansas City and Jacksonville before getting a chance last year with the Ravens, making his first NFL tackle in his only appearance.
In five exhibition games this month, Jean-Baptiste made 12 tackles and intercepted passes in back-to-back games against Indianapolis and Miami. And the Ravens were thin at defensive back anyway with Jimmy Smith set to open the season on a four-game suspension.
But the broken arm ended Jean-Baptiste's dream of a first regular NFL assignment. He came off the field in the first half grabbing his arm and heading to the locker room for x-rays.
His arm was in a sling and cast after the game as the Ravens completed an unbeaten 5-0 run through the tuneups before their season opener at home against Buffalo on September 9.