9 Opening Camp Standouts

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Now that the Ravens transition from rookies, quarterbacks and selected veterans to a full-team training camp, BaltimoreRavens.com takes a look at some of the players who stood out.

Even though things weren't full-contact and camp opened with four partial practices, there were a few names deserving praise.

  • Haloti Ngata, 5th seasonIt's not hard for Ngata to shine when he's going against players much less experienced than him, but the Pro Bowler looked nimble and ready to hit someone, an interesting combination for a 6-foot-4, 345-pound behemoth. Ngata said he feels like he's fully recovered from the pectoral injury he suffered in last year's All-Star game, and I'm betting he's itching to put on the pads Friday.
  • Jarret Johnson, 8th seasonAnother player returning from an offseason procedure (shoulder), Johnson said he was confident his shoulder was 100 percent after locking up with a few blockers to test the range of motion. Good to go for this lunchpail-carrying leader.
  • Haruki Nakamura, 3rd seasonHaruki had a huge role as the only safety in camp, but he filled in as the leader of the makeshift secondary all week. Nakamura's voice was assertive while commanding the young corners in practice.  And the fact that he didn't seem to have any problems with his season-ending ankle injury spoke volumes.

    * Albert McClellan, undrafted rookieMcClellan is making the transition from college defensive end to 250-pound outside linebacker, and he looked good doing it with a ton of reps in those first two days.  The Marshall product even took advantage of a confined space in coverage when he intercepted Troy Smith at the goal line on Wednesday.
  • Marc Bulger, 10th seasonBulger was eased into the action, mostly getting reps in skeleton portions of practice, but just dropping back, his pocket presence and incredibly quick release showed that he can be a top-notch backup toJoe Flacco. By all accounts, he's been a good teammate coming into his new situation as a backup after a two-time Pro Bowl career.
  • Ramon Harewood, 6th-round draft pickHarewood wore a knee brace, but it was encouraging to see him moving well at the tackle position, displaying some of the athleticism the Ravens saw when they drafted him in staying low and being quick. Head Coach John Harbaugh said he has a lot of "upside," but has to commit to improvement.
  • Terrence Cody, 2nd-round draft pickEven though he only had one day of practice (two sessions) after passing his conditioning test a day late, Cody's size and athleticism are evident. He will be a load to handle for any center/guard.  Cody will really be able to show what he can do when it's full-contact in the trenches.
  • K.J. Gerard, 2nd seasonGerard, who has a year on the practice squad under his belt, broke up two passes during red zone drills on Wednesday, using all of his 6-foot-1 frame to bat down two would-be touchdowns.  With Cary Williams suspended for the first two games of the season – for a violation of the NFL's personal conduct policy – and other cornerbacks injured, Gerard could make a name for himself with more opportunities.
  • Marcus Smith, 3rd seasonThe New Mexico product spent all of last year on Injured Reserve with a knee injury suffered in the 2009 preseason, and he seemed to be all the way back. There was a time on Wednesday when the receiver had to sprint to get underneath a long bomb from Joe Flacco, and Smith did it effortlessly.  Smith needs to show his physicality – both on special teams and over the middle – when the veterans return.
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