Mike Preston's observations from Ravens training camp

Congress' involvement in Ray Rice dispute is pure posturing

August 02, 2014|By Mike Preston, The Baltimore Sun

Some of our representatives in Congress have started to weigh in on the NFL’s decision to suspend running back Ray Rice for only two games, as if they don’t have enough to do already.

There is fighting the Middle East, a confrontation in Ukraine, immigrants illegally crossing our borders by the thousands and veterans not getting their benefits, and our legislators are coming down heavy on the NFL and the Ravens about the Rice suspension.

If anything, they should work to improve our justice system, which did absolutely nothing to Rice. Instead, they are just posturing and trying to gain favor in the voting community.

Hmmm ... just another day at the office.


I loved Ravens coach John Harbaugh's decision to throw cornerback Chykie Brown out of practice Saturday for drawing a penalty. In a real game, Brown would have gotten nailed for unsportsmanlike conduct.

Brown ran to the locker room like a little kid being disciplined by his father. Of course, Harbaugh treated outside linebacker Terrell Suggs differently when Suggs acted like a fool a few seconds later, but you get different treatment when you’ve gone to a couple of Pro Bowls.


The last couple of practices have been quite intense. Once Brown got his permission slip signed and was allowed to return to the field, he got into a fight with wide receiver Steve Smith.

It didn’t last long, but if it had, I would have taken Smith. For a little dude, he has no fear.

Second-year offensive tackle Ryan Jensen has replaced fellow tackle Jah Reid as the lineman getting into the most fights. Jensen mixed it up with end Kapron Lewis-Moore, and actually it wasn’t Jensen’s fault, because he was whipping Lewis-Moore while pass blocking him. He took Lewis-Moore down twice while playing.


Ravens wide receivers Jacoby Jones and Marlon Brown both scare me because they catch the ball so much with their bodies. At this level, they should be snagging more balls with the hands.

Quarterback Joe Flacco often throws high, so they'd better get used to it.

Also, Flacco is using more pump fakes with his shoulder than in previous years.


I’m starting to like second-year fullback Kyle Juszczyk. He is never going to be a thumping lead blocker like Sam Gash or Vonta Leach, but he does have good hands.

And when he turns upfield, he is a load to tackle.


It’s early, but this could be a good draft class, one of the best in years.

Linebacker C.J. Mosley and defensive tackle Timmy Jernigan should get a lot of playing time early, and tight end Crockett Gillmore, defensive end Brent Urban and running back Lorenzo Taliaferro will eventually make an impact. Rookie receiver Michael Campanaro (River Hill) also has potential, and the Ravens might have to stash him for a year.

Who's a sleeper? Free-agent rookie cornerback Tramain Jacobs from Texas A&M. The young lad has game.


The best catch of Saturday morning’s practice came from receiver Torrey Smith (Maryland). He snagged a fastball over the middle with one hand and tucked it without using his other arm.


I’m amazed at the amount of abuse officials take from players during practice. It must be really bad on game day.

I admit, some of it is funny, especially when Suggs and Jones call them out.


If I were defensive coordinator Dean Pees, I’d be concerned about the secondary. This group gets lit up pretty consistently in practice.

Flacco is a pretty good quarterback, but he’d be headed to the Pro Bowl if he played against this secondary every week.

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