Jones Apologizes, But Denies Altercation Occurred
Jacoby Jones apologized for being in the wrong place at the wrong time, but denied details of a TMZ report that said he got into an altercation with a woman on Bryant McKinnie's birthday party bus earlier this week.
The report has gone viral over the last several days, and for the first time, Jones gave his side of the story on his 105.7 The Fan radio show.
Jones opted not to go into detail, but admitted he did celebrate McKinnie's birthday on the bus down to Washington D.C., but said he did not get hit in the head with a bottle by a stripper named Sweet Pea.
"I'm going to take the responsibility that I was in the wrong place at the wrong time," Jones said. "There was no altercation. There's nothing wrong. I did nothing wrong, but I take responsibility for being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Enough said. I apologize to my teammates and everybody."
Jones said of a meeting he had with Head Coach John Harbaugh, "We're fine. Everything is good."
McKinnie also spoke to the report on his show with WNST last night, and offered more specifics.
"[Jones] didn't get hit over the head with a bottle," McKinnie said. "You had a girl who ... managed to find her way on the bus at the end of the night."
He added, "She wasn't invited."
McKinnie insisted there were not any strippers on the bus, and said it was offensive to his friends that pictures were taken of them and had that label applied to them. He said two of his friends pictured are a flight attendant and principal.
"Not any strippers. I don't know where this came from," he said.
McKinnie said he rented the bus so that nobody would have to drive home after his birthday celebration. He said he also had security on the bus.
As for where the report came from, McKinnie said he has a friend who works at TMZ and learned that the source for the story "doesn't have a good reputation." He doesn't know how this source managed to get onto the bus.
"She got paid for a story that wasn't true," he added.
Sweet Pea also posted on her Twitter account that there was no altercation with Jones, writing, "I would like to clear up the fact that I'm a waitress & the girls on the pic aren't a bunch of strippers. Jacoby & I had a verbal confrontation & that was it!!! I never hit him with a bottle & I wish ppl would stop spreading lies on the internet."
Jones was at the Under Armour Performance Center and participated in his regular activities Monday. There were no arrests as a result of the incident.
Jones is rehabbing a sprained knee he sustained in the season opener and is expected to miss game action for a few more weeks while rehabbing.
"I'm getting better every day," Jones said. "I'm closer."
Lewis Doesn't Understand Reaction To Leadership Comments
Several of Ray Lewis' former teammates reacted strongly to his comments about the need to address a leadership void in the Ravens locker room following the party bus reports. But Lewis doesn't understand all the hubbub.
"I'm totally confused with how someone can take something and make more of it, when what I was saying was so general," Lewis told Jarrett Bell of USA TODAY.
"If anybody takes offense to that, I don't get it. What did I say that was so bad?"
Lewis said Monday night when asked about the party bus incident that without him and Ed Reed, the Ravens are "missing leadership right now."
Chris Canty explained in the NFL Network video below that Lewis' comments implied that that the incident with Jones and McKinnie wouldn't have happened if Lewis was still on the team.
"There's just a little bit of [that implication] in there, right?" Canty said.
Even though Lewis' answer came after he was asked about the incident, Lewis attests that he didn't address the incident specifically, and said he was speaking generally.
"In any locker room and team situation, that's what we do: We help each other out," Lewis said. "I don't see how anybody can misunderstand that. I don't know anything about the incident. I wasn't there. How can I speak about that? That's not just about the Baltimore Ravens, that's with any team. The most important thing is not talent. It's leadership. And I'm not talking about the coaches. It's leadership with the players."
Lewis said he got a number of text messages from his former teammates, most of which essentially asking how he could attack his team.
"I'm the biggest Baltimore Ravens fan there is," Lewis said. "When I speak, I bring the locker room perspective. I don't understand. Who did I attack? I know I said it from Day 1, and this is true in any locker room, the leadership from the players is what makes a good team. ... When you have an issue, a leader will find out what's going on and how to best handle it for the benefit of the team. That's how teams operate."
He added: "The last thing I'm going to do is misrepresent about my brand."
He told Bell that he is grateful for Art Modell, Steve Bisciotti and Ozzie Newsome and the impact they have had on him.
"I'm connected to them forever."
Even in his new role as an ESPN analyst, Lewis said he still considers himself a Raven and can't bring himself to pick against the team when panelists project winners in the weekly ESPN segment.
"I've already told them I'm biased," Lewis said. "I'm a Raven for life. You can put me down for picking the Ravens to win every week. Get over it."
Mercilus Fined $15,000 For Hit On Flacco
Texans linebacker Whitney Mercilus was fined $15,000 for his hit on quarterback Joe Flacco Sunday. Mercilus was flagged for roughing the passer during the game.
"I'm going to appeal it just like every other player does in the league and hopefully get the best out of that situation," Mercilus told Sports Radio 610, per ProFootballTalk.com
"It's tough to see any reason Mercilus would win that appeal: His helmet struck Flacco's chin, and both the officials on the field and the league office agreed that it was a penalty," wrote PFT.com's Michael David Smith.
Meanwhile, Ravens safety Brynden Trawick, who was recently cut by the Ravens and signed to the practice squad after he cleared waivers, had his fine reduced for an unpenalized collision in the preseason opener against Tampa Bay.
His $21,000 fine was reduced to $10,500 upon appeal, per The Baltimore Sun's Aaron Wilson.
"Yeah, it's not as bad now," Trawick told Wilson. "It still hurts."
Don't Write Off Dickson, Interesting Tidbits
Tight end Ed Dickson has gotten off to a rough start this season, as he has dropped several of Flacco's passes.
Last week, Dickson was not targeted while fellow tight end Dallas Clark caught four balls on seven targets for 46 yards.
But don't count out Dickson just yet, says ESPN's Jamison Hensley.
"Dickson is actually a good blocking tight end. He still has value that way and that's how the Ravens are using him right now," the blogger wrote in a chat with fans. "The Ravens seem like they're going to give Dickson a few weeks off in terms of the passing game. I wouldn't write him off just yet. He stayed after the walkthrough to catch more passes. The Ravens could get more out of him down the road. He needs more confidence right now."
Here were some other interesting questions and answers from the Hensley chat:
Tom (Illinois): What are fans' thoughts about paying so much for Flacco but him not producing like a 100 million dollar QB?
Hensley: Are Packers upset at paying Aaron Rodgers more money and their team is 1-2?
Michael Zeitlin (Baltimore): *How concerned do you think the coaching staff is by the performance of the offensive line on running plays? *
Hensley: Let me put it this way: If the Ravens can't run the ball against a Bills defense that has given up 155 yards rushing per game, then it's time to worry. This is a big game for the Ravens' ground game to establish itself again.
Ryan (Clemson): How would you grade Jimmy Smith so far? Do you think he has a future as the corner opposite Lardarius Webb?
Hensley: Jimmy Smith has played better each week this year. He's being more physical and making plays on balls. This is what the Ravens have wanted from Smith. If he can keep this up, he definitely has a future opposite Webb.
Summers Farm created a 14 acre Ravens themed corn maze. Consider me there and ready to conquer this sucker! [summersfarm.com] * @RAVE_TV: On Ravens One on One, @TandonDoss said he didn't keep his TD ball b/c "I want more. 1 ball isn't gonna do it for me. There's more to come." [Twitter] * @mzenitz [Carroll County Times]: According to PFF, Ihedigbo has graded out as the third-best safety through this point of the season behind only Barry Church and T. Polamalu. [Twitter] * @mattvensel [The Baltimore Sun]: If Mike Glennon really is Tampa's new QB and if he really is 6-foot-7, Joe Flacco will no longer be the tallest starting QB in the NFL. [Twitter] * Gregg Rosenthal ranked the top quarterbacks in the NFL so far this season. Flacco fell under the "Almost there" category, missing out on the top 10. [NFL.com] * Bills running back C.J. Spiller and defensive end Mario Williams both say that they're planning to be on the field this Sunday against the Ravens. [ProFootballTalk.com] * The Delaware State Treasury is working with the NFL to teach kids financial literacy through a "Financial Football" program. Brandon Stokley offered advice to a group of Delaware high school students, saying, "I've seen it over and over where guys get their checks and all of a sudden they're broke. That's a lonely feeling, having all that money and then having none." [DelewareOnline.com]