Ravens take the field at Unitas Stadium

Street Talk Ravens take the field at Unitas Stadium

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TOWSON — A large group of Baltimore Ravens assembled today for an informal workout at Towson University.

Twenty-seven players attended the workout, including quarterback Joe Flacco, running back Ray Rice, wide receivers Derrick Mason, Anquan Boldin and Torrey Smith, cornerbacks Domonique Foxworth and Josh Wilson, safety Haruki Nakamura, defensive end Cory Redding, linebackers Jarret Johnson and Jameel McClain, kicker Billy Cundiff, punter Sam Koch and long snapper Morgan Cox.

Four rookie draft picks participated: Smith, the team’s second-round draft pick from the University of Maryland, and wide receiver Tandon Doss, quarterback Tyrod Taylor and running back Anthony Allen.

Also attending the workout: Quarterback Hunter Cantwell, running back Matt Lawrence, undrafted rookie running back Walter Sanders, receivers Justin Harper and James Hardy, tight ends Davon Drew and Dennis Pitta and defensive linemen Arthur Jones, Lamar Divens and Brandon McKinney.

"It was a great workout," Rice said. "We’re at our own pace. We got in quality work. Nobody wants to waste their time. We can control one thing and that’s being ready. It’s not training camp and it’s not minicamp, but it’s the team getting together for one reason and that’s to be prepared."

The workouts are scheduled to continue for the next two days and are closed to the general public. Tuesday was the lone workout open to reporters.

Flacco and the receivers didn’t seem to have issues with any timing and the majority of the passes were completed. However, there was no pass rush to speak of and the defense wasn’t attempting to knock down throws in an effort to avoid injuries.

"The biggest thing about getting out here right now is working with these young guys," Flacco said. "Guys that are missing out the most right now are the young guys. They’re able to get in and have a guy go over the playbook with them and come out here on the field and get a real feel for how to run the routes."

Following the workout, Flacco, Rice and Mason planned to spend extra time with the rookies to help them absorb the playbook.

Flacco said he’s being careful not to overload the rookies with too much information.

"We’ll definitely spend some time together and go over some basic stuff, so they can get a grasp on it," Flacco said. "It’s not that easy to just look at papers and teach yourself a playbook. We’re not going to kill these guys.

"The big thing is I want them to walk away from this with an understanding of how we call our routes and can they recognize where they’re going to line up and which route they’re going to have from that. As long as they get those basics, I think they can grow off of that."

A seventh-round draft pick from Georgia Tech, Allen was intent on obtaining a copy of the Ravens’ offensive playbook.

"I want to get in here and start studying," Allen said. "It’s kind of like going into a test and studying the night before. I’m going to see it today. I got about 75 cents on my card to get some copies at Kinko’s. I’m going to try to get as many copies as I can."

First-round cornerback Jimmy Smith didn’t attend the workout, but only three defensive backs were present.

As an unsigned high draft pick, Smith may have been following the advice of his agent, Drew Rosenhaus, to avoid the risk of suffering an injury. Smith also lives in California. Most of the players who went to the workout live in the area or on the East Coast.

"No, I’m not disappointed," McClain said when asked about Smith’s absence. "A lot of people have a lot of stuff going on. You can’t judge anybody’s situation."

As far as the labor dispute, Mason said he would be surprised if it’s resolved anytime soon.

"You have to be patient," Mason said. "Nothing is going to get done in the next month. Realistically, if something gets done before July, I would be surprised, probably even August. Hopefully, both sides will surprise a lot of people and work things out."


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Aaron Wilson

About Aaron Wilson

Aaron Wilson covers the NFL for National Football Post as well as the Baltimore Ravens for The Carroll County Times and Ravens24x7.com. He has previously covered the Jacksonville Jaguars and Tennessee Titans and has covered the NFL since 1997.  He has won several regional writing awards, including, most recently, Best Sports News Story for the state of Maryland in voting conducted by the Associated Press managing editors. 

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