Hey Jamison


December 19, 2008|By JAMISON HENSLEY

Each week, Baltimore Sun reporter Jamison Hensley will answer questions about the Ravens. To submit a question, e-mail sports@baltsun.com. Give your name and phone number so we can verify the e-mail.


HEY, JAMISON: : Two years ago when the Ravens were 13-3 and Trevor Pryce was healthy (unlike last year), didn't he play on the end, rushing the passer in tandem with Terrell Suggs? I keep hearing how he's double-teamed and held constantly, and every time I spot him, it looks like he's playing nose tackle. Is this a misconception on my part? If not, wouldn't the Ravens be better suited to put him back at end opposite of Terrell?

Mike Singer, Ellicott City

HEY, MIKE: : When it comes to passing situations, the Ravens have always shifted Pryce to the inside, where he generates a lot of push up the middle. When Brian Billick coached the Ravens, he said Pryce provided the biggest pass rush that the Ravens had inside since the days of Sam Adams.

This is nothing new for the Ravens, who used Rob Burnett the same way during their Super Bowl run. Burnett would play defensive end on the base defense but shift to tackle on the team's nickel and dime packages. When the Ravens move Pryce inside, they put edge rushers like Jarret Johnson or Antwan Barnes at end. Because Pryce is such a unique athlete for his size, the Ravens could use him anywhere on the line at any time. He has bounced back from an injury-marred 2007 season to record 4 1/2 sacks (third on the Ravens).

HEY, JAMISON: : I watched an NFL game, sorry I can't recall the teams, but the team scored and the player jumped into the crowd (Lambeau Leap style) and was flagged 15 yards for excessive celebration. I still see the Packers do it and not get flagged. I understand the tradition is standard in Green Bay, but if one team gets penalized, shouldn't everyone?

Jerry Pruchniewski, Stafford, Va.

HEY, JERRY: : I wish you could remember the game because it's my understanding that a player jumping into the stands is allowed everywhere, even though the tradition is known mostly in Lambeau. At the 2006 NFL meetings, the owners voted 29-3 in favor of giving officials the power to penalize a team 15 yards on the ensuing kickoff for excessive celebrations anywhere on the field. Lambeau Leaps, spikes, dunks, spins, dances and simple celebrations are allowed, but penalties are given for any celebration other than that. Other practices such as using props, celebrating as a group or gesturing to the other team are also not permitted.

The rule was put in place because of the excessive celebrations in the 2005 season. Maybe the NFL should give a handbook to players on what celebrations are allowed.

HEY, JAMISON: : In the Steelers game, why did they keep announcing that "Number 78 [Adam Terry] is an eligible receiver"? Is there a limit to the number of eligible receivers on offense?

Dorothy Baker, Baltimore

HEY, DOROTHY: : There is a limit to eligible receivers on offense, but there is a different reason why Terry is announced as one. In the NFL, eligible receivers must wear certain uniform numbers. That's the easiest way for the officials to distinguish between eligible and ineligible receivers (and the Ravens wouldn't want to confuse the officials even more, would they?).

Running backs must wear numbers 20 to 49, tight ends must wear numbers 80 to 89 (or 40 to 49 if the numbers 80 to 89 have been exhausted), and wide receivers must wear numbers 10 to 19 or 80 to 89. So, Terry reports to the official as an eligible receiver because he is wearing No. 78. With Jared Gaither and Willie Anderson on the field as tackles, Terry is essentially a blocking tight end. If Terry would fail to report and moves downfield on a passing play, the Ravens would be penalized for an illegal man downfield.

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