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50 Words or Less: Kyle Hamilton Has Loftier Goals After Breakout Season

S Kyle Hamilton
S Kyle Hamilton

The first week of Organized Team Activities is history. It was fun watching Roquan Smith sprint onto the field, a slimmer Lamar Jackson throwing passes, and the impressive presence of Derrick Henry.

As the Ravens continue early preparations for a promising 2024 season, here are 10 thoughts from me, all in 50 words or less:

Kyle Hamilton became an All-Pro in his second season, but it's obvious he's driven for more after watching and listening to him at OTAs. Zach Orr believes Hamilton is capable of winning Defensive Player of the Year one day. That day may not be far away.

Jalyn Armour-Davis had an excellent two days of practice during OTAs open to the media. Injuries have prevented Armour-Davis from becoming a regular part of the cornerback rotation during his first two seasons. But he looks ready to fight for a roster spot and playing time.

It's hard to describe how physically imposing Derrick Henry is. Zay Flowers said he was startled by Henry when he ran near Flowers on a stretch play. Flowers was laughing, but it won't be funny when Henry runs this fall, especially with Pat Ricard as a lead blocker.

Henry made several nice catches during practices, and it's often overlooked that he has 155 career receptions. Throwing the ball to Henry is another way to get him in space, matched one-on-one against a defender who wants no part of tackling him.

With Henry on board, Justice Hill may not reach the career-high 84 carries he had in 2023. However, Hill remains a valuable player on offense and special teams. He had a touchdown catch Thursday and looks as agile and fast as ever.

If an award was given to the practice player of the week, veteran linebacker Malik Harrison may have won. Harrison had a leaping interception Wednesday and made several strong pass rush moves on Thursday. Harrison's physicality is a given, but he's also making athletic plays.

Orr said he'll call plays from the sideline as defensive coordinator. That's hardly a surprise. Orr loves being near the action, and he's a great communicator. From the sideline, he can look players in the eye and get their immediate feedback.

Offensive Line Coach Joe D'Alessandris is also hands-on, and rookie Roger Rosengarten is getting plenty of instruction from his position coach. It's early in the offensive line competition, but Rosengarten's progress will be interesting to watch in his bid to become the starting right tackle.

Malik Cunningham made a strong early impression in his transition from quarterback to wide receiver, showing reliable hands and ability to create separation. No matter how quick or elusive, you can't play wide receiver if you can't catch. Cunningham's hands definitely passed the initial test.

Undrafted rookie safety Jordan Toles of Morgan State had an interception in Thursday's practice. It was a nice moment for the Baltimore native and former St. Frances Academy standout who has plenty of locals pulling for him.

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