Baker had been struggling with a knee injury throughout 2013, appearing in just four games. He last played in Week 9 against the Carolina Panthers, but was sidelined once again when the Falcons faced the Seattle Seahawks. D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal Constitution reported the organization was concerned with Baker's health, which likely prompted the decision to place him on IR.
The Falcons were initially believed to be a Super Bowl contender in 2013, but a series of injuries derailed the season. Quarterback Matt Ryan has been sacked 16 times, which ranks 21st in the NFL, but has not had a reliable pocket to pass from this season. Protection issues were compounded by the absence of wide receivers Roddy White and Julio Jones, both of whom have missed significant time this season, with Jones being placed on IR.