On Now
Coming Up
  • Thu., Jul. 28, 2016 11:30 AM EDT Live Training Camp Press Conference Head coach John Harbaugh, RB Javorius Allen, T Ronnie Stanley and S Eric Weddle will address the media.
  • Fri., Jul. 29, 2016 11:30 AM EDT Live Training Camp Press Conference Head coach John Harbaugh, tight ends coach Richard Angulo, TE Dennis Pitta, DT Brandon Williams and G Marshal Yanda will address the media.
  • Mon., Aug. 01, 2016 7:00 PM EDT Training Camp Military Appreciation Day The first M&T Bank Stadium practice will take place on Monday, Aug. 1 at 7 p.m. This practice – free and open to all fans – coincides with the Ravens’ annual Military Appreciation Day. Approximately 3,500 special seats will be reserved for active service members and veterans who present valid military identification upon check-in at the stadium.
  • Sat., Aug. 06, 2016 6:00 PM EDT Training Camp Fireworks Night On Saturday, Aug. 6 at 6 p.m., the second M&T Bank Stadium practice will showcase the organization’s third-annual Fireworks Night, an event highlighted by post-practice autographs for children and a fireworks/laser show.
  • Fri., Sep. 09, 2016 5:00 PM EDT Countdown To Kickoff Party Presented By Miller Lite Grammy Award®-nominated rock band 3 DOORS DOWN will perform at the Ravens Countdown to Kickoff Party Presented by Miller Lite on Friday, Sept. 9 at Maryland State Fairgrounds. Gates open at 5:00 p.m. Open to all ages.
  • Mon., Oct. 03, 2016 5:00 PM EDT A Purple Evening A Purple Evening is back! Join Purple on Monday, October 3rd for on-field drills, player appearances and autographs, giveaways, and much more! Tickets will go on sale soon. Check Purple-Just for Women on Facebook for the latest club and event information.
  • Sun., Oct. 23, 2016 7:30 AM EDT Purple Away Game Trip Up the Jersey Turnpike we go! Hit the road with the Purple Club on Sunday, October 23rd to watch our Baltimore Ravens take on the New York Jets for a 1:00 p.m. game at MetLife Stadium. Don't miss your chance to join the only NFL women's fan club to travel into unfamiliar territory!
  • Sat., Dec. 10, 2016 2:00 PM EST Army vs. Navy Football Don't miss one of the greatest events you can ever attend! The Army-Navy Game presented by USAA returns to M&T Bank Stadium on Saturday, December 10, 2016

News

Print
RSS

Gino Gradkowski Off To Good Start As Joe Flacco’s Center

Posted Jul 1, 2013

Joe Flacco said the second-year center is allowing the Ravens to keep its fast pace.

The relationship between quarterback and center is literally the closest in football.

Thus, Joe Flacco's adjustment to his new starting center since the retirement of 15-year veteran Matt Birk – the man who fostered his growth for the past four years – is essential this summer.

So far, Flacco gives leading candidate Gino Gradkowski a thumbs up.

"It's been good," Flacco said during minicamp. "Matt was a great center, and I think Gino has done a great job of picking the offense up and being able to kind of get in there right away and do pretty good."

Gradkowski, a fourth-round pick out of Delaware (like Flacco) in 2012, didn't see any action last year until Week 17 in Cincinnati, when the Ravens' playoff berth was already sealed. Gradkowski spent the year learning from Birk and picking up Baltimore's offense.

Being able to keep the offense moving at a fast clip, and making the necessary calls to help his fellow linemen and Flacco identify the defense, is key for Gradkowski.

"He's a bright guy," Flacco said. "He's picked the offense up quickly and he's making all of his calls quickly and getting our offense going and allowing us to set that tempo."

The knock on Gradkowski has been his size. At 6-foot-3 and 300 pounds, he's an inch shorter and 10 pounds lighter than Birk. That makes for a smaller blocker on the line.

It also changes the dynamics of the snap. Even Flacco admitted he was concerned about taking snaps from the shorter Gradkowski.

"I know I loved taking the snap from Matt because I could basically stand straight up because he was so high," Flacco said. "I was a little bit worried about Gino at first, because I didn't think he was going to be like that, but he's been great. I've been comfortable underneath of him."

Gradkowski still has to beat out a push from A.Q. Shipley, who the Ravens acquired from Indianapolis via trade in early May. Gradkowski took the snaps with the first-team offense throughout minicamp, indicating it's his job to lose.

Related Tags

Please Note

The opinions, analysis and/or speculation expressed on BaltimoreRavens.com represent those of individual authors, and unless quoted or clearly labeled as such, do not represent the opinions or policies of the Baltimore Ravens' organization, front office staff, coaches and executives. Authors' views are formulated independently from any inside knowledge and/or conversations with Ravens officials, including the coaches and scouts, unless otherwise noted.

Related News

Recent Videos

Recent Photos