Players to watch

August 24, 1998|By Gary Lambrecht

Wally Williams, left guard: Six days after ending his holdout, Williams gets his first taste of his new, old position after being moved from center. He could play three quarters.

Jeff Mitchell, center: The second-year man going through his first preseason will see another lengthy stretch of play tonight. He could be snapping well into the second half.

Duane Starks, cornerback: The effects of the first-round draft pick's 15-day holdout showed at times against the Jets last week. The Ravens love his instincts, but they want to see his level of concentration increase.

DeRon Jenkins, cornerback: His play continues to improve. With Starks aiming at his job, Jenkins needs to keep it that way.

Kim Herring, safety: He is coming off an excellent effort against the Jets, and with Stevon Moore out with a shoulder injury, Herring will call the signals in the secondary for the second consecutive game.

Ralph Staten, safety: He replaces Moore for the second week in a row. Watch him on the blitz as well as in pass coverage.

Jay Graham, running back: Coach Ted Marchibroda is sticking by him as the starter, although the Ravens would like to see him break out with a big game. He has averaged only 2.9 yards on 18 carries.

Errict Rhett, running back: With his effective running (32 carries, 136 yards), he continues to press Graham for the starting job. Will he get some time with the first-string tonight?

Patrick Johnson, wide receiver: The second-round draft pick is coming off an excellent training camp, which included a great preseason opener two weeks ago. He'll start in place of the injured Jermaine Lewis.

A. J. Ofodile, tight end: Already one of the team's more improved players, he probably has solidified a roster spot. He and backup quarterback Eric Zeier could hook up for another big play tonight.

Lional Dalton, defensive tackle: One of the few rookie free agents with a chance to make the final, 53-man roster. With Tony Siragusa possibly out, he should get plenty of chances to secure a job.

Larry Fitzpatrick, defensive tackle: Ditto.

MacArthur Johnson, wide receiver: Another rookie free agent who has impressed the coaching staff. With a fine showing tonight, he could force his way on the developmental squad.

Bennie Thompson, safety: Only an emergency will force him onto the field on defense, but keep your eyes peeled for the next crazy thing he might do on special teams.

Pub Date: 8/24/98

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