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  1. #1
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    Aaron's article on Ngata on 24x7



    Here you go - keep in mind that we can show the complete text because it appears on this site. Generally, when linking to a news story, you should fully credit the author, show a paragraph and then a link. That will keep the lawyers away.

    NGATA HAS QUIET DEBUT ~ August 19, 2006
    Photo by Sabina Moran
    By Aaron Wilson
    ( awilson@profootball24x7.com )

    OWINGS MILLS -- The earth didn’t shake as big Haloti Ngata didn’t record a tackle, collapse the pocket or make much noise in his NFL debut. Overall, though, the Baltimore Ravens’ heavyweight rookie defensive tackle felt encouraged about how he fared Thursday night in a 20-10 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles.

    Sidelined the previous week with a minor knee sprain, the 6-foot-4, 340-pound first-round draft pick had a quiet evening as he grappled with the Eagles’ veteran offensive line. He wasn't a major factor against the run or pass.

    “The game felt fast,” said Ngata, the 12th overall pick from Oregon. “The blockers were firing off the line fast. They were doing a quick offense and playing very fast. I had to kind of think about it when I need to be reacting.

    “It's an adjustment from college football. I’m anxious to see the film so I can see how I really did. I’m glad to have that game under my belt.”

    Defensive coordinator Rex Ryan was hoping to see a few one-on-one encounters between Ngata and Pro Bowl alternate offensive guard Shawn Andrews, but that never really materialized. “We never went head-to-head much, so it was a lot of me trying to go around him and shoot the gap,” Ngata said. “He’s a good player, so it was a nice test for me. My knee felt fine and I’m sure I’ll get better and better every week.”

    EMERGING THREAT: It’s only the preseason, but Musa Smith has overshadowed veteran runners Jamal Lewis and Mike Anderson in a way that goes beyond his inspiring comeback story from a gruesome broken leg two years ago. Smith is running with outstanding body lean and power, flashing a bit of breakaway speed in the third quarter.

    His 43-yard touchdown burst in the third quarter propelled him to a 55-yard outing on four carries. He also demonstrated his agility when he hurdled offensive tackle Adam Terry on a 36-yard screen pass that nearly went for a score.

    A week ago, Smith led the Ravens in rushing with 61 yards on four carries and receptions with four. He has registered three of the Ravens’ four longest plays this month. “I'm just really trying to soak in every moment that I have since I've been given a second chance," Smith said. "When I was on the operating table, and I was told there was a 50-50 chance I could come back, I knew I had to set my mind on coming back. It's been a long road and a lot of hard work, but it’s definitely paying off. The leg feels really good right now."

    Drafted in the third round out of Georgia in 2003, the Ravens initially tabbed Smith as a future replacement for Lewis. However, his career was nearly ended in 2004 on Dallas Cowboys safety Roy Williams’ horse-collar tackle that caused a compound fracture of his tibia. Smith ended each of the past two seasons on injured reserve.

    Lewis is entrenched as the starter and Anderson figures to be the primary backup, but Smith is projected to be the third-down back in addition to his special-teams responsibilities. "He's practicing with such joy," Ravens coach Billick said. "He's loving being out there, and he's playing the same way. It's great to see him having the success he deserves."

    UNBOWED: One week after a stumbling, bumbling performance that appeared to confirm why he was benched in favor of Steve McNair, backup quarterback Kyle Boller redeemed himself. Not only did he endure being sacked five times because of the shortcomings of the reserve offensive line, but Boller appeared much more relaxed and fundamentally sound. “Kyle’s got a lot of things going on with the group he’s with,” Billick said. “He did some great things.”

    The results were a 4-for-7 night for 115 yards and a 141.4 passer rating as Boller connected on a 42-yard completion to Devard Darling. He also delivered a 27-yard touchdown strike to Darling.

    “I prepare like I’m the starter,” Boller said. “I have to be ready because you never know when you’re going to have to go in. That doesn’t change for me in the preseason.”

    QUICK HITS: McNair, who wasn’t sacked last week, was sacked twice. One occurred when McNair got tangled up with center Mike Flynn and fell to the ground. The other happened when Eagles defensive end Jevon Kearse ran past right tackle Tony Pashos to force McNair to fumble. Pashos was also flagged for holding Kearse, and left tackle Adam Terry was penalized for a false start. “There are going to be growing pains,” offensive guard Edwin Mulitalo said. “It’s part of us getting used to Steve and him getting used to us." ... Rookie wide receiver Demetrius Williams threw a key block on Smith’s screen pass. … Defensive tackle Dwan Edwards led Baltimore with a game-high six tackles. … Running back Mike Anderson was limited because of a sprained foot that isn’t regarded as serious. … Rookie punter Sam Koch averaged 39.8 yards on four punts as veteran Leo Araguz punted once for 42 yards.
    Admin Steve
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  2. #2
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    Re: Aaron's article on Ngata on 24x7

    I love it. Thanks guys. Why buy a subscription at scout when you can get it free right here at 24x7. It is things like this that makes me exclusive to 24x7.
    It's a new season! It's a new day!




  3. #3

    Re: Aaron's article on Ngata on 24x7

    “The game felt fast,” said Ngata, the 12th overall pick from Oregon. “The blockers were firing off the line fast. They were doing a quick offense and playing very fast. I had to kind of think about it when I need to be reacting.

    “It's an adjustment from college football. I’m anxious to see the film so I can see how I really did. I’m glad to have that game under my belt.”


    This is why getting into camp early is an absolute MUST for a rookie lineman. It will be several games (at least) before things slow down for him. Not to mention the conditioning factor. Can he even play 4 quaters of football at this point?




  4. #4
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    Re: Aaron's article on Ngata on 24x7

    We are deep enough at DT so it shouldn't be an issue regarding his conditioning.




  5. #5

    Re: Aaron's article on Ngata on 24x7

    Quote Originally Posted by RavenDomination
    We are deep enough at DT so it shouldn't be an issue regarding his conditioning.
    Agreed, it looks as if up to 5 players will see time on a daily basis at DT plus the fact that AD will slide in on third and long. He should only need to play 30 or so snaps a game.




  6. #6
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    Re: Aaron's article on Ngata on 24x7

    People make reference to AD sliding inside on situational plays. I dont see that happening as much this season. Trevor Pryce makes that less of a reality. Plus AD has so many other assignments on defense and can be used better in space or off the edge. I would think Dan Cody comes in and plays as a DE. Pryce slides down to DT and AD either is a edge rush end or outside LB. Or you may see Franklin, Gregg and Pryce on the line and 4 LB's or 3 LB's and a safety.




  7. #7
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    Re: Aaron's article on Ngata on 24x7

    Nice article, Aaron. The remarks about Boller pretty much sum up what has been so frustrating about him. He has no consistency at all. At times, he'll look amazing and will show flashes of why he was such a high draft pick, and then he'll follow it up with a "stumbling and bumbling" performance. I just hope he can learn as much as he can from McNair while he's here.




  8. #8
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    Re: Aaron's article on Ngata on 24x7

    We'll work out the kinks by TB, I'm not too worried




  9. #9

    Re: Aaron's article on Ngata on 24x7

    I would expect Ngata to start vs TB so I would also expect to hear his name a few times during the next 2 preseason games. So far I really haven't seen anybody run on this D in preseason and that's good.

    I would expect to see a better pass rush the next 2 games.

    FM




  10. #10
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    Re: Aaron's article on Ngata on 24x7

    Just so we are straight. I recall the following question:

    Is the oline that bad or is Ngata that good? As I remember, he was blowing up plays inthe backfield against the 1st string oline in TC. I think I have my answer after the Eagels game how about you?




  11. #11
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    Re: Aaron's article on Ngata on 24x7

    that doesn't mean Ngata's bad really...He was supposed to be going against Shawn Andrews, who coaches referred to as one of the best OL in the league.

    Our OL admittedly is still getting the hang of it. I'm sure once he adjusts to new OLs, Ngata will continue his success.
    .
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    “When I think of a Baltimore Raven - we go in there, we take your lunch box, we take your sandwich, we take your juice box, we take your applesauce, and we take your spork and we break it. And we leave you with an empty lunch. That’s the Baltimore Raven way.” - Steve Smith Sr.


    Call me a Special Teams coach again. I dare you! I double dare you, MFer!




  12. #12
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    Re: Aaron's article on Ngata on 24x7

    Quote Originally Posted by ravensfan86
    Just so we are straight. I recall the following question:

    Is the oline that bad or is Ngata that good? As I remember, he was blowing up plays inthe backfield against the 1st string oline in TC. I think I have my answer after the Eagels game how about you?
    I certainly don't. Ngata is still not 100% (and he may never be this year) and it was his first game action. I'm not judging the performance of a rookie off of his first game. If I did that than PJ Daniels would average 2 fumbles a game for his career.

    Like WR, DT is a position that takes a couple of years to master. That is why you rarely see any DTs even mentioned for rookie of the year. If Ngata still looks like he did against the Eagles 2 years from now, then I would be really concerned.




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