News & Notes: John Harbaugh Hopes Ravens Sign Jason Pierre-Paul, Blake Martinez

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(From left to right) OLB Jason Pierre-Paul & ILB Blake Martinez

The Ravens reportedly have interest in two veteran free agent defensive players – pass rusher Jason Pierre-Paul and linebacker Blake Martinez. The two reportedly visited the Ravens Tuesday, but no moves have been announced as of Wednesday evening

Asked if there are plans to sign anyone, Head Coach Harbaugh said, "I hope so." Pierre-Paul has 91.5 career sacks, while Martinez had the most tackles in the NFL from 2017-2020 (594).

"That would be great," Harbaugh said. "I've already asked them once, and I'll ask them again, 'Are you in shape? Are you ready to go play? Are you ready to run around and help us win?' Because that's what I care about; we're not trying to do anyone any favors here. We want guys who will come in and help us win right now. If you're ready to do that – that's really for any player – come on."

Harbaugh was pleased with the signing of linebacker Brandon Copeland to the practice squad, a former star at Gilman School who began his NFL career as an undrafted free agent in 2013. Copeland had his first practice on Wednesday and can play inside and outside linebacker, along with special teams.

"I've always had to watch him for other teams, and he plays so hard, such a physical guy," Harbaugh said. "To have a chance to bring him back now, and hopefully work his way in there, is really good to see.

"This guy is really smart,' he doesn't forget. I guess he's like an elephant because we did punt protection today, and our footwork is different than everybody else's, and he went out there and did it just like it was however many years ago he was here – just perfect. That was nice to see."

Lamar Jackson Says It's Hard to Anticipate Bill Belichick's Defensive Strategy

How the Patriots try to defend Lamar Jackson will be one of the keys to Sunday's game. Head Coach Bill Belichick has used many different methods to contain explosive players during his great career, and his game plans often change dramatically from one week to the next. Jackson will study film this week, but knows it's hard to anticipate what he'll see on Sunday.

"That Belichick defense [is] a gameplan defense, so I don't know how he'll try to play me this season," Jackson said.

Jackson has faced Belichick's teams twice, with very different results. In 2019, he led the Ravens to a 37-20 victory in Baltimore, throwing for 163 yards and one touchdown while running for 61 yards and two touchdowns. However, the Patriots got even in 2020 at New England, winning 23-17 on a cold and rainy night that was made crisp offensive execution challenging.

"I'll say the weather played a big part last time we played," Jackson said. "Every time we got up and lined up on offense, it was heavy rains; you can't even throw the ball through this rain, you can't run the ball, you probably can't even see your opponent if you're trying to make him miss. But hopefully, it's perfect weather."

Odafe Oweh Works to Counter How He's Being Blocked

Stats aren't everything, but the Ravens want to improve their pass rush, and have more of a sense of urgency following their loss to Miami. Tua Tagovailoa threw six touchdown passes against them while being sacked just once, and outside linebacker Odafe Oweh is still looking for his first sack this season.

Oweh said teams are paying more attention to him this year, but that he must learn to adjust.

"They have more film on me, obviously I was a rookie last year," Oweh said. "They know what I'm good at. But that's not an excuse. You have to learn how to counter everything."

Harbaugh had breakfast with Oweh this week and offered advice and encouragement.

"He's so determined, wants to be so good," Harbaugh said. "He's learning; he's a young player. The biggest thing is that the process is what leads to the production. Come in every day, take care of business, keep it simple, let's not overthink everything; start with your stance and your alignment, and we'll go from there."

Josh Ross Could Return Later This Season

The Ravens placed rookie inside linebacker Josh Ross (foot) on injured reserve this week, but Harbaugh said he could return later this season. The Michigan product was the only undrafted rookie to make the team and played 18 snaps on special teams during the first two games.

"It's a multiple weeks kind of a deal," Harbaugh said. "It's probably a four-week IR right now, and we'll see where we're at after four weeks."

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