The Ravens packed up the buses Monday afternoon and traveled south to Annapolis for their final off-site practice of training camp.
The Ravens practiced at the Navy Marine Corps Memorial Stadium for the third year in a row, and fans were able to attend the free event to watch the action and get autographs after practice.
“It was a great night here in Annapolis, everybody is having a lot of fun,” Head Coach John Harbaugh said. “It was also a great night for our football team. It was a different environment – a night environment, and we’re going to be playing night games throughout the preseason.”
The session was lighter than the previous two days, as the Ravens practiced in shorts and shells without full contact.
If there was a star of the day, that distinction belonged to rookie quarterback Keith Wenning. He had his strongest practice of training camp, connecting on several long passes throughout the evening.
Wenning started his impressive showing when he connected with wide receiver Deonte Thompson down the sideline for a 60-yard touchdown past cornerback Sammy Seamster for the score. A few plays later, he threw a long pass down the sideline to wide receiver LaQuan Williams, who wrestled the jump ball away from cornerback Dominique Franks.
The next play, Wenning went deep again and connected with wide receiver Jace Davis for a 40-yard gain after the undrafted rookie found a soft spot in the coverage. The three completions for Wenning during the 11-on-11 drills were as good as he looked all season.
“Keith was on fire in the third-down drill,” Harbaugh said.
“The line did a heck of a job giving me some time and the receivers downfield made some plays,” Wenning added.
Here were some of the other notes from practice:
- Linebacker Daryl Smith (groin) returned after missing the last few days of action. Cornerback Jimmy Smith also practiced after leaving Sunday’s practice early following a collision with cornerback Asa Jackson. Wide receiver Michael Campanaro (ribs) and cornerback Lardarius Webb (back) both didn’t practice.
- Most of the practice was fairly uneventful until a skirmish during the final 30 minutes. Outside linebacker Courtney Upshaw got into a fight with an offensive lineman that appeared to be Jah Reid, and then several players got into the scrum. A pile-up between several offensive and defensive lineman happened quickly before teammates started pulling players out of the mix.
- Cornerback Chykie Brown had a much stronger day than past sessions. He intercepted quarterback Joe Flacco during 11-on-11 drills after tight end Dennis Pitta was unable to haul in a tough catch over his head. Brown picked off the pass on the deflection, then weaved in and out of traffic on the return before spinning the ball on the ground in celebration. Flacco went after Brown the very next play, but the cornerback knocked down a pass intended for wide receiver Kamar Aiken.
- Seamster also picked off Flacco during seven-on-seven drills after a ball bounced off the hands of wide receiver Marlon Brown.
- Williams had a good overall day. He also hauled in a 40-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Tyrod Taylor during seven-on-seven drills.
- The defensive front really looks like it’s going to be a problem for opposing offenses. Flacco and Taylor were both forced out of the pocket on several occasions when defenders forced their way into the backfield.
- Harbaugh let kicker Justin Tucker test out his leg for the fans, giving him a chance to attempt a 68-yard field goal. The kick was just a little bit short, falling at the base of the goal post in the back of the end zone.
- Wide receiver Torrey Smith made a great catch on a perfect pass from Flacco in the back corner of the end zone, beating Jimmy Smith in individual drills. During the same set of drills, wide receiver Steve Smith Sr. got wide open past Jackson, and then sprinted to the end zone for the score. Overall, the receivers won this portion of one-on-one drills, with Jacoby Jones, Brown and Jeremy Butler also scored touchdowns.
- Running back Justin Forsett has a ton of potential. Injuries have held him back during his career but he’s shown good movement and quickness throughout training camp. Watching him during a few runs Monday, he made quick cuts and was able to get to the second level in a hurry. He also had a nice catch and run out of the backfield during team drills.