Ravens Camp Notes: August 11th
What started as a refreshingly cool morning, quickly turned into another hot and humid summer day as the clouds parted and the Ravens took to the practice field at 8:40am.
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Notably missing from practice was Maxx Williams and Tyus Bowser, both of whom did not play in the game this past Thursday night. Earlier in the week Bennett Jackson and Christopher Ezeala left practice early and have not yet returned. Jaylen Hill, Bam Bradley, and Quincy Adaboyejo remain on the PUP list.
Darren Waller did make his return to practice after missing an entire year from suspension. Coach John Harbaugh had some comments on Waller after the day wrapped up.
John Harbaugh: He needs to be here. I haven’t seen him for a year. I love him. He’s a great guy, talented guy. Where’s he been? You gotta be here. You don’t come waltzing in, all of sudden become the starting tight end. You gotta prove it, you gotta do some things, got to make plays. I love him, but like I told him, I’m going to be the hardest guy on him of anybody. I’m going to be on him every single day because he’s got a lot to prove.
Special teams took to the field to start the day and Tim White had returned to practice in full. After missing the game two nights ago, his way onto the team will be staying healthy and winning that returner job.
In addition to Waller and White, Tony Jefferson and Kenneth Dixon made their returns as well.
Individual drills came next. Mark Andrews was the spotlight as the tight ends took reps inside the 10. He looks like a big target with a nice catch radius for Ravens QBs in the scoring zone. He’ll be able to grab balls up high where only he can reach them.
Lamar Jackson looked like he was focused on not delivering the ball from a side arm motion, really exaggerating an over the top motion. He took this into 7-on-7 drills, but the side arm motion crept in when he really needed to put some zip on the ball throughout the day. His ball comes out wobbly but perhaps that is him working on his mechanics.
Our first look at 11-on-11 showed us Matt Skura playing center. In fact, Alex Lewis didn’t take any snaps from there. He played a lot of right gurad while Marshal Yanda and other long time veterans practiced minimally, including Terrell Suggs, Jimmy Smith, Eric Weddle, and Tony Jefferson.
Judging by the teams that the receivers lined up with, it appears that Jordan Lasley and Breshad Perriman are fighting for one of the last receiver spots on the team. Jaleel Scott looks a step behind after the fine performance Perriman had in the Rams game, and he didn’t really help his stock today in practice.
The team went to kicking drills where Justin Tucker stayed rested and Karre Vedvik made every field goal attempt on the day, including a long of 53 yards.
Following that it was back to 7-on-7 and 11-on-11 action. Willie Snead dropped a pass that drew groans from the crowd but he mentioned trying to go glove-less on the day to strengthen his hands up.
Willie Snead IV: I just wanted to practice at it today, that’s something I want to work on this week is just my hands. So my goal is to not use gloves all the way through and to see if it helps me with my releases, with catching the ball.
Just like we’ve seen him in preseason games, Orlando Brown Jr. is getting a whole lot of reps in practice. His body is changing immensely since college and the draft, allowing him to get a little quicker out on the egde.
Orlando Brown Jr.: When I first got here I was 23% [body fat] 338 [pounds]. Now I’m at 350 and at 19%. So my body fat has changed a bunch. In January when I started training I was 31%, 365.
It was a day the defense ultimately won as 7-on-7 and 11-11 drills went on. The only highlight on the offense was John Brown making three spectacular catches. The reports are true that he and Joe Flacco have something clicking, while Flacco had an off day throwing to most everyone else. He was visually upset and dropped a loud “F-bomb” after an inaccurate throw on corner route in the endzone.
Hayden Hurst had a rare drop. Chris Moore was spotting throwing up a little on the sideline.
The offensive woes continued on through the day when the team went to last second and two minute drills. With one second on the clock from the 30-yard line, Flacco hit Michael Crabtree in the front of the endzone, but Crabtree was a second late getting his head around and he dropped the ball hitting him in the hands. Harbaugh was furious and shouted, “If you’re going to do it that way, give me the twos.” As in the second team offense.
It didn’t get any better for the second team led by Lamar Jackson as they started on the 50 with 14 seconds left. They were able to gain a quick 10 yards and clock the ball with two seconds remaining. The heave intended for Jaleel Scott dropped out of the back of the endzone and Scott stopped on the route about five yards short which didn’t help it look any better either.
Flacco returned to lead the first team down the field from their own 20, into field goal range during a two-minute drill. But two incomplete passes led to a game tying field goal, according to the practice scoreboard.
When Jackson and the second team took the field for their shot, it was only on the second play where Jackson threw a deep out to Scott which Stanley Jean-Baptiste made an incredible over the shoulder leaping grab to intercept him on. Scott didn’t make much of an effort to high point the ball or go up after it allowing Jean-Baptiste to do so. Jean-Baptiste is a bubble player in a crowded secondary and needed a play like this to boost his chances of making the 53-man roster.
Some other notable post-practice quotes:
Talking about Patrick Ricard’s versatility.
Harbaugh: Very impressed with the versatility of Patrick Ricard. I graded the tape yesterday and I don’t think I gave him a minus the whole time. I think I gave him all pluses. That’s pretty remarkable for a guy that’s playing offense and defense.
Jamison Hensley (ESPN): How do you delegate his time for which meetings he goes to each day?
Harbaugh: He just, figures it out. We were out there today and he was on defense on D-line and we called a personnel group and he just walked across the line. Joe Cullen [defensive line coach] started panicking. ‘We need another d-lineman out there.’
Greg Roman: Pats been exemplary at his preparation. He’s done a very good job. He does a good job preparing and good job performing. He’s on course to really show us what he can do.
How about Hayden Hurst’s adjustment to the NFL?
Roman: He’s doing a great job. Coming from college football it’s a big jump. A lot of different, multi-dimensional, segments or compartments that he’s got to really focus on. Blocking in the run game, blocking in pass protection. Obviously route running against man coverage in the NFL. You see a lot more man coverage than you do in college. There’s a lot of different things he’s progressing through right now.
How did Orlando Brown Jr. think he performed Thursday night?
Brown: A lot better than versus Chicago. I would say I was a lot more consistent with my physicality, my punch, my footwork. There’s still a lot of room for me to grow.
Is there pressure on the wide receivers to expect three new guys to make an immediate impact?
Snead: Not at all. I look forward to the challenge. People are talking about it, I’m looking forward to it. I know Crab [Michael Crabtree] is. I know JB [John Brown] is. It’s something we’ve all been talking about all offseason. Just doing our part to help this offense go and get us back to the playoffs and further on from there.