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News & Notes: Ravens Promoting Cornerback From Practice Squad After Jimmy Smith's Injury

Posted Dec 4, 2017

Head Coach John Harbaugh talked about the leadership he saw from Terrell Suggs on Sunday, who he’s rooting for on Monday Night Football and Jimmy Smith’s performance enhancing drug suspension.

Ravens Promoting Stanley Jean-Baptiste From Practice Squad 

The Ravens will bring cornerback Stanley Jean-Baptiste up from the practice squad after Jimmy Smith’s season-ending Achilles injury Sunday against the Detroit Lions, Head Coach John Harbaugh announced Monday.

Baltimore signed Jean-Baptiste to their practice squad on Oct. 3. The former second-round pick of the New Orleans Saints in 2014 was considered one of the best players in the draft.

Like Smith, Jean-Baptiste is a big-bodied corner, standing in at 6-foot-3, 220 pounds. He played in four games as a rookie, almost entirely on special teams, but was released by the Saints at the end of the preseason the following year.

Since then, Jean-Baptiste bounced to four different teams over the past two-plus years. He spent time with the Detroit Lions and Seattle Seahawks in 2015 and the Kansas City Chiefs and Jacksonville Jaguars this past offseason. The Jaguars released him from their practice squad on Sept. 12.

The Ravens will mostly turn to first-round rookie cornerback Marlon Humphrey. They can also use Maurice Canady, who is capable of playing inside or outside, and undrafted rookie Jaylen Hill.

“We’re much better able to handle the injury to Jimmy,” Harbaugh said. “We’re much better able to handle that than we have in the past.”

Harbaugh Impressed With Terrell Suggs’ Leadership

The Ravens knew the Lions were capable of making a second-half surge. That’s just the kind of team they are and the kind of quarterback Matthew Stafford is.

But when the Lions scored their third touchdown of the second half to close the Ravens’ lead to 27-20 with about 10 minutes remaining in the fourth quarter, outside linebacker Terrell Suggs took command.

Suggs rallied the entire defense around him on the bench for a speech. It was him doing the talking and a lot of nodding heads.

“I think we just got a little frustrated,” Suggs said. “I think we just got a little amped up, and everybody was itching to make a play.

“But I’ve been around the game a long time, and you have to understand, as long as you have the lead, you still can win the game. I just wanted to convey that to the guys. I’ve been in a lot of games around here. I’ve won every type of way. I’ve lost every type of way. So I just wanted to make sure they knew that and that we were OK.”

The Ravens defense didn’t give up another point after that. Suggs kicked it off with a sack and loss of 8 yards, which led to Stafford launching an ill-advised pass on the run that Humphrey picked off.

On the Lions’ next possession, Canady drilled backup quarterback Jake Rudock as he threw and Eric Weddle picked it off and returned it for a game-sealing touchdown.

“T-Sizzle got us together and told us we needed to put on our Ravens hats for the next nine minutes and that’s what we did,” Humphrey said.

There’s always a lot of chatter around Baltimore about which players are the vocal leaders after the departure of Ray Lewis and Ed Reed. Suggs showed he’s that kind of player once again Sunday, and it wasn’t lost on his head coach either.

“I think it’s great that he did that,” Harbaugh said. “He’s a leader and they listen to him. At some point in time, you have to find a way to corral things up a little bit. ... There’s nobody better on our team to do it than Terrell Suggs – that’s why he’s such a good leader.”

Harbaugh Doesn’t Say Who He's Rooting for on Monday Night Football

Two of the Ravens’ biggest rivals square off on Monday Night Football with the Pittsburgh Steelers traveling to Cincinnati to take on the Bengals.

It’s a big game in the AFC North with implications on playoff standings, and the Ravens are going to benefit either way.

If the Steelers (9-2) lose, it puts the Ravens just two games back in the chase for the division title, with a matchup against Pittsburgh up next on Sunday night. It would put Pittsburgh within striking distance.

If the Bengals (5-6) lose, it drives them two games behind Baltimore in the wild-card chase and would make it very difficult for them to overtake the Ravens and make the playoffs.

So who is Harbaugh rooting for?

“That’s a tough question. If they both could lose, that’s what I would be rooting for,” Harbaugh said. “One of them has to lose, so that’s good.”

Harbaugh: Players Are Responsible for Managing Their Supplements

Smith is the Ravens’ third player to be suspended this season, joining tight end Darren Waller and running back Kenneth Dixon.

Waller was suspended for at least one year after his second violation for substance abuse, and Dixon served a four-game suspension while on injured reserve for performance enhancing drugs.

Harbaugh was asked about how he addresses PEDs with players.

“It’s addressed by the league, mostly,” Harbaugh said. “The league, the trainers, they bring people in that talk to them about what the rules are and educate the guys. I think the agents are very involved in that, what supplements they can and cannot use. I think the guys are very vigilant for the most part on that. Sometimes they make mistakes. There’s a broad array of different things that guys can get involved with, different supplements and things like that.

“I’m really not well-versed on it; it’s not something I spend a lot of time studying. I was not very good at chemistry in high school, I didn’t like it, and I was happy to sneak by with my C. To me, it’s the players’ responsibility to do it. If they want to play, they’re going to be very vigilant about that and do a good job with it. I think that’s the way most coaches are, and that’s all you really can do. It’s pro football.”

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