5 Players Who Need Big Showings This Summer


Ravens Organized Team Activities (OTAs) begin Wednesday, and the team will be looking for big showings from every player. 

Some have the spotlight more squarely on them, however.

The Ravens will have three weeks of OTAs: May 27-29, June 2-4, June 8-9 and June 11-12. Teams are permitted 10 practices, in which players can wear helmets but no pads. No live contact is permitted, but teams can hold 11-on-11 drills. Mandatory minicamp will be from June 16-18.

Here are five players to keep an eye on as the team ramps up its preparations toward training camp:

S Matt ElamGeneral Manager Ozzie Newsome has been blunt about Elam's struggles last season, saying the Ravens were "not satisfied" and that he "has to be a better football player." Heading into his third year, Elam now has an uphill climb to reclaim his starting role and see more snaps, as he'll compete with Will Hill, Kendrick Lewis and others. Elam has shed some weight and Newsome has noticed more confidence this spring. Now Elam needs to transfer that into better results on the field. He can't show improved tackling in non-contact practice, but he can display enhanced coverage.

LB Arthur Brown
Like Elam, Brown is heading into a pivotal third year. The former second-round pick has yet to make much of an impact on defense, and saw even fewer snaps last year than during his rookie season,*only *active for four games. If veteran Daryl Smith doesn't participate in OTAs or C.J. Mosley is slowed by his wrist injury, Brown will get the snaps to show his growth. Brown had trouble with the playbook as a rookie. That should be behind him now, allowing him to show off his speed and instincts.

WR Michael CampanaroCampanaro struggled with injuries last year, which stunted what looked to be a promising rookie season. The fleet-footed slot receiver missed time during last year's summer practices, then sat out seven games during the regular season because of a hamstring injury (inactive for 12 total games). Campanaro has a shot at more offensive snaps, and may be the leading contender at returner. But he has to stay on the field before he can get a promotion.

OLB Courtney Upshaw
With the departure of Pernell McPhee, Upshaw could see more snaps as a pass rusher. Upshaw has been used as a run-stuffing edge setter for his first three years, and split duty opposite Terrell Suggs with Elvis Dumervil the past two. Upshaw is heading into a contract year and knows more sacks would equal more dollars. He'll compete with rookie Za'Darius Smith to get the call in passing situations.

DT Timmy Jernigan
Jernigan is going to have a lot more on his plate this year with the trade of Haloti Ngata to the Detroit Lions. The second-year defensive tackle had 23 tackles and four sacks in 12 games (three starts). Jernigan needs to show he can stand up against the run just as well as he pass rushes, and play with discipline within Baltimore's system. He admitted to freelancing at times last year.

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Related Content