Developmental squad put on hold Salary cap keeps club under practice limit

Ravens Notebook

August 29, 1996|By Mike Preston and Kevin Langbaum

The Ravens will likely begin the regular season without a developmental squad because of salary cap concerns.

The Ravens have to make changes by Saturday or the team will be nearly $46,000 over the salary cap. Ozzie Newsome, the team's vice president of pro personnel, said the team won't re-sign any of the players waived from training camp until money has become available.

The Ravens had talked about re-signing three rookies to the developmental squad: Dexter Daniels, a University of Florida linebacker, Murray State running back Derrick Cullors and Idaho offensive tackle Spencer Folau. Newsome said the salary for a developmental player is $56,000 a year.

"We can either stay at the number we're at or restructure somebody's contract," said Newsome. "We would have a full developmental squad if we could afford it, and we'll add players as the money becomes available."

The Ravens put reserve offensive tackle Jed Devries on the injured reserve list yesterday because of neck and shoulder injuries. The team now has four players on injured reserve and only 50 on the roster. The maximum roster limit is 53, the developmental squad limit is five, so the team is down a possible eight players for practice.

"We can make it for the next three weeks until our bye week," said Ravens coach Ted Marchibroda about the lack of practice bodies. "It would have been nice to have a developmental squad, but we don't. We'll be all right."

Despite apparent salary cap problems, the Ravens are still continuing talks with free-agent tight ends Eric Green and Johnny Mitchell. There has been speculation that the Ravens were shopping around running back Leroy Hoard, but Newsome adamantly denied that yesterday.

Media flocking to opener

The historic first-ever Ravens regular-season game has drawn incredible interest from media around the country and the world.

The Ravens issued 160 print and radio media credentials, which is more than the two press boxes can hold. Some members of the media will be in seats in the stands. In addition, the maximum 150 field passes were issued for TV and still photographers.

NBC, which is televising the game, requested 100 credentials.

Japan's national football magazine, Touchdown LTD, will also have coverage.

Ogden gets test in hurry

Rookie left guard Jonathan Ogden will get quite a test in his first NFL start Sunday. He figures to line up against Raiders defensive tackle Chester McGlockton, a Pro Bowl pick the last two seasons.

"I always look forward to a good challenge," Ogden said. "If I can play well against Chester McGlockton in the first game, that means I have the potential to play well against everybody. If I play well against him, there are no excuses for later in the year."

Et cetera

Newspaper and television reports say the Ravens may be acquiring running back Errict Rhett from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, but Ravens officials say no deal is in the works. . . . Tight end Frank Hartley, who had been out with a knee injury, returned to practice yesterday but had to be helped back to the locker room at the end of the workout. He was later walking on crutches. His status for Sunday's game is questionable. . . . Opening Day commemorative tickets will be embossed instead of torn upon entering Memorial Stadium on Sunday.

Ravens celebration

The Ravens will kick off their opening weekend with a "Celebrate the Return" rally tomorrow night downtown, featuring fireworks, two free concerts and a ball relay including former Colts Lenny Moore, Bruce Laird, Stan White and former Maryland Stadium Authority chairman Herb Belgrad.

Events start at 7 p.m. with a concert by jazz guitarist Carl Filipiak at the Inner Harbor. The ball relay will begin at 7: 50 p.m. at Mount Vernon and Charles streets and proceed south to Harborplace, where Moore will hand off to John Moag, chairman of the stadium authority, at 8: 16 p.m. Then Moag, Ravens owner Art Modell and Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke will address the crowd. Fireworks will start at 8: 20 p.m., followed by a reunion concert by the Ravyns rock group until 10 p.m.

Pub Date: 8/29/96

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