Camp Notes

The Good, Bad & Ugly: A Look Back on the Ravens Preseason

Raiders Ravens Football
Heading into training camp and right on through the preseason the Ravens looked to answer questions about their roster so that they could field the best 53 to defend their Super Bowl title. The most glaring questions were:  1. Given all of the roster turnover how will the Ravens develop chemistry? 2. Considering the injuries and retirement, who would play the inside linebacker positions? 3. How would the Ravens account for the departure of Anquan Boldin? Time will tell if they’ve adequately addressed these questions. The coaches and front office...

RAVENS REPORT CARD: Receivers step up in 24-21 loss

Marlon Brown v Rams
Preseason games are the frontiers of opportunity for NFL hopefuls yet so painful to absorb for viewers. Thankfully the cheap hors d’oeuvres are now out of the way and it’s time to feast on the main course. But before we do, let’s close the lid on the nasty leftovers with this week’s Report Card. QUARTERBACK: C- Caleb Hanie’s QB Rating (61.1) suggests something worse but he should be given credit for standing tall in the pocket while under pressure most of the evening. Last night was his last game as...

RAVENS ROSTER: The Final Projection

Rainey v Rams
By tomorrow at 4PM the Ravens have to pair their roster down from 75 to the league mandated 53. To put that into perspective, 29.3% of the roster eligible to take the field last night will be gone in less than 48 hours. Jobs will be lost. Dreams will be derailed. BUT… New opportunities may also surface. Players on the 53-man roster tomorrow at 4PM can’t necessarily feel comfortable. Some hopefuls shed from other rosters may be attractive to the Ravens. A receiver, tight end or offensive lineman could suddenly...

Ravens Will be Better in 2013

Lombardi Gras 728
Tonight is the final dress rehearsal – the preseason curtain call. In one week the Ravens will officially begin their defense of the title as the reigning Super Bowl Champions. I’m asked often what I expect from this season’s team. And it’s interesting how the question is presented or phrased. It’s almost as if the questioner winces a bit anticipating a not so pleasant answer. They then look surprised when I respond… The Ravens will be better in 2013! Yes I do realize that they are the champs but being...

CUTDOWN DAY: The Aftermath, Phase I

Harbaugh Ozzie
After assessing the weekend’s roster moves to get down to the league mandated 75 limit by 4PM tomorrow (a couple cuts are still pending), the most surprising moves were the parting of ways with Messrs. Cornell, Harewood, Berry and Lee. Cornell was highly regarded last season but never earned the right to even play with the twos this summer. Harewood reported in the best shape of his short career and even started at times in 2012. It’s not as though they did anything to stick with the team but the...

Ravens 53-Man Roster Projection 4.0

Shiancoe
Cut down day looms. By Tuesday, August 27 at 4PM, NFL rosters need to be trimmed from 90 to 75. This isn’t the cut down day that players dread. That one arrives on August 31 when 22 more players must be let go in order to get down to the league mandated 53-man roster. Some of you may remember “The Turk” – the team intern made popular when the Baltimore Ravens were featured in the very first season of HBO’s Hard Knocks. The Turk will tell you that most of...

Aaron Mellette and Marlon Brown Continue Seesaw Battle

brownseesaw
In what has been a lackluster training camp for the wide receiver position (after Torrey Smith), two bright spots have been a couple rookies. Aaron Mellette and Marlon Brown are two players that have at least given the wide receiver position a pulse this preseason. With so many struggling above them on the depth chart, both have not only shown up during practice, they’ve also put together some impressive game film. Having watched this battle closely throughout the preseason, it appears that each player has one-upped the other at various...

Despite New Faces Ravens Offense Will Look Familiar

Flacco Clark
To know where you’re going, you first need to understand where you have been. Listening to many fans, you get the sense that that nothing short of another dose of the “magic beans” that QB Joe Flacco seemingly took before last season’s playoff performance will be good enough. However, the fact is that the majority of pieces most responsible for the team’s strong offensive performance at the end of last season remain in place. When Jim Caldwell took over as offensive coordinator he modernized the offense on the fly. He also...

Camp Notes: Newly-Acquired Veterans Feature Prominently

stokley
As the Ravens prepare to host the Carolina Panthers on Thursday evening, they practiced in shells and shorts and worked mostly on technique. Some phases could have been categorized as a further install of the playbook. Monday’s practice wasn’t particularly eventful (not always a bad thing), but here are a few observations. Chris Johnson Released Prior to the start of practice, the team announced that cornerback Chris Johnson had been cut. Johnson was sidelined from practice with migraines according to the Ravens official website and he had previously donned a red non-contact...

Camp Notes: Fans Watch Ravens at Stevenson University

photo
For the second straight season, the Ravens held their final “public” training camp practice at Stevenson University. Mustang Stadium is the current home to the Division III men’s lacrosse national champions and the former practice home to the Baltimore Colts. The Ravens also practiced here for the first 8.5 years of their existence before moving to the building now known as the Under Armour Performance Center. Rice Welcomes the Crowd The stadium was filled to capacity (3,500 seats) as fans and children tried to catch an up-close glimpse of their...

Camp Notes: Quotes from the Team

canty2
After a disappointing performance by the starters in Thursday’s second preseason game, the Ravens players had to know they’d be in store for a few unpleasant practices in the coming days. They got back at it today in Owings Mills, trying to fix some of the myriad of issues that popped up against Atlanta. Here’s what some members of the squad had to say on a variety of topics: Aaron Mellette Benefits from John Harbaugh’s  ”Hard Coaching” Unfortunately for the Ravens, many of the receivers they had relied upon to...

Ravens 53-Man Roster Projection 3.0

silhouette-1 (1)
After two preseason games the Ravens have done little to develop any rhythm on offense, cohesion on defense and no one has stepped up as worthy candidate to start opposite Torrey Smith at wide receiver. John Harbaugh and his staff hope that preseason game 3 will hold plenty of answers. They will need to make their first cuts by August 27 (from 90 to 75) and then they will have to set their 53-man roster two days after the preseason finale in St. Louis (August 29) on August 31. Based...

FAN QUESTIONS: You Asked, We Answered

Baltimore Ravens v Tampa Bay Buccaneers
“Why isn’t Laquan Williams considered a legitimate potential starter? He has been on the team for years and all I can remember of him are decent plays when given the opportunity. Plus, he’s a Maryland boy.” – Scott Zacharko LaQuan Williams has a lot of people clamoring for him to get an opportunity, and even though fans love seeing a local product playing for the hometown team, the coaching staff couldn’t care less. While he’s been a great contributor on special teams, Williams has struggled at times as a wide...

THE NICKEL PACKAGE: 5 Things to Look for Tonight

Jacoby Camp 728
The Ravens will make their home preseason debut tonight at M&T Bank Stadium where thousands of fans will experience for the first time the enhancements made to the building intended to “enhance the fan experience.” While they are observing and evaluating the new creature comforts they might also want to focus in on the performances of these players: 1. Pernell McPhee had a very productive rookie campaign in 2011 but his play slipped a bit in 2012 due in part to knee problems that derailed his offseason conditioning program. McPhee...

Lardarius Webb Is Nearing His Old Form

Webb Training Camp 2013
Lardarius Webb’s progression on the field from his second torn ACL in four-years has been exciting (and encouraging) to watch. Last season during a Week 6 victory over the Dallas Cowboys, Webb was assigned to Cowboys’ receiver Dez Bryant during the first quarter of the game. The two collided knees on an 18-yard comeback route. Immediately, Webb dropped to the ground, clutching his knee. At the time, Webb’s injury was not only thought to be detrimental to the Ravens defense, but to Webb’s career as well. Fortunately, neither was the...

Camp Notes: Yanda Returns, Homecoming for Stokley

Marshal Yanda Sidelines 600
Welcome Back Brandon Stokley As practice began on Monday afternoon, an old but familiar face once again stood on the field. Donning a No. 80 jersey that he once wore as a member of the Ravens Super Bowl XXXV team, Brandon Stokley stood next to two of the newer faces of the franchise, wide receiver Torrey Smith and cornerback Lardarius Webb. Stokley saw plenty of action in his first day of practice and wasn’t necessarily assigned to one specific offensive team, practicing in formations with receivers with the likes of...

Mellette Digs Out Of Harbaugh’s Dog House

sp_072413ravens2-large
It has been a roller-coaster type of week for Ravens rookie wide receiver Aaron Mellette. On Thursday, Mellette caught his first career NFL touchdown — the only pass thrown his way. The following practice, coach John Harbaugh tore him a new one. “Get number 13 off the field,” Harbaugh yelled to the sidelines, criticizing Mellette on a field in front of fans watching practice on a small hill near the sidelines. “He’s lackadaisical and lazy, get number 13 off the field.” Mellette was just one of a handful of players...

Ravens Rookies Get a Taste of the M&T Experience

M&T exterior
On Sunday, over 25,000 fans entered M&T Bank Stadium to not bare witness to the new renovations inside the stadium, but they also were able to see their team in the final open practice of the preseason.  For the rookies, this was their first time performing in front of the hometown fans, and they were impressed to say the least. First-round pick Matt Elam praised the fans for their support. “I can see how loyal the fans are here during practice,” Elam said. “I can only imagine how they are...

Communication Is Primary Key For Secondary

chykie brown
Throughout training camp, the secondary for the Baltimore Ravens has been one of their top performing groups. Unfortunately, for the first-team defensive backfield, that didn’t translate well during Thursday’s preseason opener against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Fortunately for the Ravens, the struggles that they endured were all coachable, as the team had multiple breakdowns communication-wise, which was expected with such a tremendous amount of turnover from last year’s group. Following Saturday’s practice, John Harbaugh assessed his priorities as they relate to the secondary. “First of all, talent, secondly, individual technique...

CAMP NOTES: Ticked Off and Picked Off

Baltimore Ravens Training Camp August 22, 2009
Saturday’s training camp practice was quite an eventful one. Let’s get to the details. Don’t Ask John Harbaugh About Injuries As fans await the injury status of running back Bernard Pierce and wide receiver Deonte Thompson, head coach John Harbaugh doesn’t feel like talking about it. “No comment on any injury situation,” Harbaugh said following Saturday’s practice. “It’s training camp. If it’s something serious, I’ll let you know. I’m not going to get into every knick or bruise that we have on our team.” Update: The Baltimore Sun has reported...