Bonus keeping Reed absent


Difference near $200,000 for team, first-round pick

Weaver has first practice


July 28, 2002|By Jamison Hensley and Brent Jones | Jamison Hensley and Brent Jones,SUN STAFF

The difference between safety Ed Reed sitting in Miami and reporting to Ravens' training camp is believed to be less than $200,000.

Reed, the 24th pick overall, is the only Raven missing from camp and is one of 13 unsigned first-round picks. With the 23rd and 25th picks now signed, he is expected to receive a signing bonus somewhere between $3.75 million and $3.55 million under the league's slotting system.

A league source confirmed last night that the snag is the signing bonus.

Although Reed's agent, Jeff Moorad, declined to comment on the dollar amounts, he said the sides have agreed on a five-year structure, which likely includes yearly minimum salaries.

"Ed is working diligently and studying his playbook to replicate the experience he would be having in Baltimore right now," Moorad said. "Make no mistake, we recognize the importance of training camp. But the ball is in their court. With further reflection by them, I hope we can get a deal done by the first of the week."

Reed, who said he would report to camp on time last month, is the Ravens' fourth first-round holdout in six years, joining Peter Boulware (1997), Duane Starks (1998) and Travis Taylor (2000). The Ravens have their first full contact practice tomorrow, and team officials wanted to have Reed suited up by that time.

Strong debut for Weaver

End Tony Weaver made his Ravens training camp debut and displayed the quickness and leverage that made him a second-round selection.

Weaver had a good first practice, regularly penetrating into the backfield during the light contact workout. This after he missed the opening day of training camp over a contract dispute, which forced him to arrive around 11:30 p.m. Friday.

"There is no frustration," Weaver said. "I understand the situation where I am with the salary cap and what not. I know if all that wasn't going on, I would have been here right on time. So you just take it in stride.

"I don't feel behind at all. Basically we went over a lot of stuff we did in the minicamps. I attended all of those so I feel I'm right where I'm supposed to be now."

Weaver did not miss much Friday. The Ravens were forced to move the morning practice inside the gymnasium at McDaniel College because of rainy weather.

"Fortunately, because of the structure we had the first couple of days, him not being here [Friday] was not that big of a loss," Ravens coach Brian Billick said. "The real thing starts on Monday."

Weaver signed a four-year contract and will be the starting left end. He recorded seven sacks and 59 tackles last season at Notre Dame.

"I can't remember the last time I missed a practice," Weaver said. "I'm excited to be out here and start playing football again."

Hot ticket

The Ravens sold out three home games in nine minutes and another one within the hour yesterday, the first day single-game tickets went on sale. The regular-season opener against Tampa Bay (Sept. 15) and the Monday night game against Denver (Sept. 30) along with the Pittsburgh (Oct. 27) and Tennessee (Nov. 24) games are sold out. About 500 tickets remain for Jacksonville (Oct. 20) and 1,000 for each of the remaining games against Cincinnati (Nov. 10), New Orleans (Dec. 8) and Cleveland (Dec. 22). ... Ravens owner Art Modell was released from Johns Hopkins Hospital yesterday morning after suffering a mild heart attack last Sunday. Modell has temporary blurred vision in his left eye, but is hoping to make his first visit to training camp this week. ... Cornerback Chris McAlister is the backup punt returner to Lamont Brightful. Brightful took the majority of punt and kickoff returns during special teams practice yesterday afternoon. ... Cornerback Gary Baxter is practicing without the cast he wore on his right hand during the last minicamp. As expected, his hand made a full recovery.

Profile: Wes Pate

Position: Quarterback

College: Stephen F. Austin

Who he is: Pate was the Ravens' 10th and final pick, and 236th overall selection (seventh round) of the 2002 NFL draft. He threw for 2,626 yards and 19 touchdowns last season at Stephen F. Austin, the second-highest single-season mark in school history. He transferred to the small Texas university after two seasons backing up Tim Rattay at Louisiana Tech.

What he will do in camp: Pate is currently third or fourth on the Ravens' quarterback depth chart, but he'll need to throw well during training camp to hold his position backing up starter Chris Redman. With a good camp, he could move into the third slot and earn a spot on the team.

Who he wanted to be: "Joe Montana. Right when I started really liking football was when the 49ers were so dominant. He was always so calm and in control of everything."

Favorite football moment: "This year we were down by 14 with two minutes left and we came back and won in double overtime against Jacksonville State. I threw five touchdowns."

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