With the Ravens holding their 19th full-team practice of training camp on Friday as they count down to their second preseason game, I’ve offered a dozen thoughts, each in 50 words or less:
1. After signing his deal worth up to $6 million, Jadeveon Clowney wasted no time getting acquainted with his new teammates, watching the latter half of practice from the sideline. Defensive line coach Anthony Weaver worked with Clowney in Houston and was “a strong advocate” for signing him, per John Harbaugh.
2. Though Clowney never lived up to extraordinary expectations as a top overall pick, he’s strong against the run, which is something Baltimore also needs at outside linebacker. The 30-year-old may not put up big sack figures, but he should still have enough juice to help disrupt the pocket.
3. Ronald Darby was thrown right into the competitive fire with reps in both 11-on-11 and 7-on-7 drills. Just 10 months removed from a torn ACL, Darby moved confidently and “looked like he’s been practicing the whole camp,” per Harbaugh. The Ravens will hope to give him some preseason game action.
4. Compared to the typical player returning from a serious injury, Darby is in a unique position with Baltimore needing him to play much sooner than later with Marlon Humphrey out for the start of the season. The Ravens will likely take whatever Darby can give them — even if not 100%.
5. Harbaugh said Humphrey’s surgery should allow him to play freely upon returning rather than trying to play through a foot issue that could have gotten worse as the season progressed. The head coach wouldn’t disclose the specific timetable, saying only that Humphrey will return “pretty early in the season.”
6. J.K. Dobbins took part in his first 11-on-11 work since making his practice debut earlier this week, taking a handoff in a goal-line period and quickly being met by Justin Madubuike at the line of scrimmage. Regardless of any business side fallout, Dobbins has looked like himself so far.
7. Rashod Bateman participated in 7-on-7 drills and made one of the plays of practice with a terrific touchdown catch on a Lamar Jackson throw to the back corner of the end zone. The third-year receiver initially grabbed the pass with one hand and secured it going to the ground inbounds.
8. Assistant wide receivers coach Keith Williams acknowledged Bateman’s “been a little frustrated” working his way back, and he even appeared a little uncomfortable early in practice before pushing through and making some plays like the aforementioned catch. His upside in this offense remains immense if the surgically-repaired foot is healthy.
9. I doubt there’s much of a path to a roster spot for Tarik Black or Sean Ryan, but both made impressive plays with Black catching multiple passes from Jackson in full-team drills and Ryan making an acrobatic touchdown reception. Both 6-foot-3 receivers would be good additions for the practice squad.
10. A welcome sight transitioning from the Greg Roman offense to Monken’s is how often the Ravens have practiced various rub routes with Nelson Agholor catching a touchdown on one inside the 10-yard line during Friday’s practice. Kevon Seymour didn’t have a chance in coverage.
11. Patrick Ricard underwent hip surgery for a torn labrum he played through last season. He had the same injury and surgery for the opposite hip two years ago, but the Pro Bowl fullback “feels great now.” How much of a role he’ll have in this new offense should be interesting.
12. Odell Beckham Jr. and Morgan Moses received vet days with Harbaugh wanting to give Beckham — and his surgically-repaired knee — some extra rest after he practiced so hard and well in the joint practices with Washington. Though Beckham’s day-to-day rep totals aren’t crazy, how regularly he’s practiced has definitely been surprising.