On Tuesday, the Ravens ran a number of trick plays and odd offensive formations. For an offense that had very limited success, that seems like teaching a baby to run before he can crawl.
The team was in full pads after a day off on Monday.
The tennis ball drill (where defensive backs track a tennis ball through the air) is a favorite for the players and done without a machine, which increases difficulty. Marlon Humphrey dropped his first opportunity, then lost the ball on his second. Players who tracked the ball well and made the catch included Lardarius Webb, Jimmy Smith, Brandon Carr, and Reggie Porter.
The offensive line started well with some nice push in the “inside run” drill. The first team, from left to right, consisted of Ronnie Stanley, Alex Lewis, Ryan Jensen, Matt Skura, and James Hurst. After perhaps 3-4 successful plays however, there was a fumble scooped up by C.J. Mosley for what would have been a substantial return. When the twos entered, Jermaine Eluemunor was loudly admonished for failing to keep his pads low. Among the defenders, Brandon Williams had a nice penetration and Carl Davis held his point well versus Jarell Broxton.
As practiced moved to 7-on-7 drills (which should be dominated by the offense, since there is no pass rush), the offense continued to struggle. New TE Larry Donnell dropped a pass over the middle, then Chris Matthews dropped an on-target pass. That sequence caused Ryan Mallett to clap his hands together loudly. Mallett’s next pass was not enough in front of Mike Wallace and Robertson Daniel dove for a PD. Finally, Dustin Vaughn completed a pass to Tim White and Josh Woodrum connected with Vince Mayle on a crossing route. It’s not unusual to have the 3rd-string QB challenged during a single drill, but to see the entire offense sputter play after play in 7-on-7 drills stands out.
Things didn’t get better when the team began 11-on-11 drills. Jimmy Smith picked off a pass batted up by the defensive line and Otha Foster had an apparent pick-6 on the first play for the defensive twos.
The star of the 1-on-1 drills was 3rd-round selection Tim Williams. On consecutive plays he ran by LT Roubbens Joseph, then beat Joseph to the inside with a lightning-quick move. He looks like the real deal.
Practice hit its low point when Nico Siragusa was injured by the goal line on a run play. He was removed by cart and it’s since been revealed he has torn his ACL, MCL, and PCL.
Harbaugh praised the versatility of Anthony Levine during interviews. He played dime in addition to cover-2 safety and special teams roles. John also reported that Crockett Gillmore has been lost for the season after his surgery (MCL), but that Maurice Canady could return.
Marshal Yanda was dressed and participated in positional drills, but not 11-on-11.
The old line saying, “winners make jokes, losers say deal’em” has never been more apparent. The offense is tense, emoting, and can’t seem to find the same page. The defense is swaggering against backup signal callers. It’s not a healthy combination.
* Willie Henry looked good holding the point of attack on most reps. He had pressure and batted a pass high in the air that was just beyond the reach of Kamalei Correa.
* Chris Wormley had some solid pressure versus the first team.
* Justin Tucker missed consecutive FGs from 49 yards. The first hit the right upright and the second was wide right.
* Tony Jefferson had a diving tip and pick of a deflected pass over the middle.
* Brent Urban and Za’Darius Smith converged for a coverage sack during 11-on-11.
* Za’Darius had a sack, then a PD on consecutive plays in a later 11-on-11 segment.
* Marlon Humphrey stripped a pass from Jeremy Maclin by the right sideline.
* Terrance West had a long run off the left side and blocked Correa effectively in a 1-on-1 blocking drill.
* Chris Moore made the play of the day, a 1-handed grab from Mallett down the right sideline.
Brandon Carr spent several minutes at the beginning of practice circling the goalpost while alternating open-handed punches from left and right, presumably to simulate how he needs to press receivers.
Quotes of the Day
Harbaugh to the offense: “We’re late to the huddle, we’re late to the line, we’re falling asleep here.”
Suggs on Correa’s failure to haul in the tip from Willie Henry for a pick: “You didn’t want to be great, 51. You just wanted to be good.”
Eric Weddle from the defensive sideline: “You look like the Bad News Bears, offense.”