Harewood Surprised By First NFL Fine
Yesterday evening, offensive tackle Ramon Harewood received news from the NFL that surprised him.
"Haven't even played my first official down in the nfl yet and already hit with the fine... Jeez!" he tweeted.
Harewood, who was drafted in the sixth round by the Ravens in 2010, has been on injured reserve for the last two seasons because of injuries to his knees and ankle.
After finally getting healthy and making the 53-man roster, he was hoping to get off to a clean start in 2012 before this small bump in the road.
The 6-foot-6, 334-pounder was fined $8,000 for an illegal block in the St. Louis Rams preseason game, delivering a diving block to the right leg of Rams defense tackle Michael Brockers, according to The Baltimore Sun's Aaron Wilson.
Brockers suffered a high ankle sprain and was helped off the field by trainers. Harewood did not get a penalty for the block, but the league office has since reviewed the play and issued the fine.
Harewood said he may appeal the fine.
"Of which I thought was perfectly legal," Harewood tweeted of the block. "Will appeal tho... Gotta wait and see."
Ravens Rallying Behind Orioles
Safety Ed Reed was sporting his Orioles cap in the locker room yesterday.
When our own Ryan Mink told him it was a nice hat, he responded: "Got to support the home team."
That wasn't the first Orioles sighting around the Ravens facility. The Sun has seen Anquan Boldin, Ray Rice and others showing their support and sporting O's gear as the Baltimore team is currently in second place in the AL East behind the New York Yankees by just one game. They were tied for first before yesterday's games.
"Baltimore is buzzing about the Birds right now, but even if some fans are focused more on the pennant race than 'Monday Night Football,' Ravens players believe there is plenty of room in the spotlight for both teams," wrote Matt Vensel.
From Ravens players throwing out the first pitch at Oriole Park, including Reed, Torrey Smith and Haloti Ngata, to the football and baseball players tweeting back and forth to each other, the two teams are pulling for one another.
"I love that this city gets to root for the Orioles and the Ravens," tight end Ed Dickson told Vensel. "I wasn't really a baseball fan before [I] came here, but I have picked up the traditions of the Orioles and kind of become an Orioles fan a little bit. I'm rooting for those guys. I hope they win the World Series and I'm going to be supporting them. And I hope they can support us to with this championship that we're building over here."
Stephen A. Predicts Ravens Super Bowl, Skip Disgusted
ESPN's Stephen A. Smith is predicting a Ravens-Packers Super Bowl in which he sees as linebacker Ray Lewis' final hurrah.
As Smith was explaining the reasoning behind his pick, you could audibly hear Skip Bayless moaning in disgust in the background. Bayless says the Ravens won't even make the playoffs.
Instead, Bayless is sticking by his early prediction from July, saying the New England Patriots will win it all.
"Listen, there's no credibility in Skip's argument whatsoever when it comes to anything associated with Tom Brady," Smith said. "Because anything that has to do with Tom Brady, he loses his mind. I mean the only reason why we don't hear more loving things about Tom Brady is because he is in the same division as Tim Tebow."
"Now wait a second," Bayless snapped back. "You're the guy who's picking … you've got Joe Flacco in the Super Bowl? Are you serious with that?"
Smith confidently stood by Flacco saying "he can pull it off."
"You are going to lose some sleep this year," Bayless concluded.
McKinnie Harbors No Ill-Will
Once offensive tackle Bryant McKinnie returned to the locker room from his day off and his dramatic contract negotiations, journalists inquired about his feelings toward the Ravens and their decision to restructure his contract days before the season opener.
The 11-year veteran has been in this business for a long time and didn't see a problem with it. He said the deal is done and doesn't harbor any ill feelings.
"I don't have no problem," McKinnie said Wednesday, via CSNBaltimore.com. "If anything in business, you can't get too many emotions tied up in it when you know you have to deal with business at the same time.
"It was business on their end, it was business on our end and we took care of it."
McKinnie's base salary went from $3.2 million to $2.2 million, but he can earn the original salary back in incentives. The veteran did say there were a lot of emotions Tuesday as he went from thinking he was on the Ravens, then he was without a team, and then was back with the Ravens again.
At one point he received a phone call from John Harbaugh Tuesday, thinking his head coach was calling to say his goodbyes.
"At that point I thought I was already gone. I was surprised to get the phone call. I thought it was a farewell phone call," McKinnie said.
"There was a lot of change in emotions, swinging back and forth because you thought you were gone and then they're back. I'm here now so I can focus on the Bengals. I was a little bit confused but we managed to get through it and I'm still here. It was confusing, but we were able to work it out. That's the only thing that matters really."
Harbs: Boring Huddle On Its Way Out Of Football
We are witnessing a radical change in football, says Brian Billick and John Harbaugh.
That's because huddling after each play is on its way out of the game, which Harbaugh believes makes* *the game more exciting and fun to watch.
"We ran the huddle [last week], were we huddled in the game against St. Louis and I just thought to myself, 'Wow, this is kind of torturous to watch,'" Harbaugh told Billick in the video below. "I couldn't wait for us to get out of the huddle. In my mind it was, 'Let's go!'
"I think it's becoming a more free-flowing kind of a game. I think the huddle is on its way out."
Using less of the huddle has a domino effect on the rest of the game from formations and substitutions to communication, tempo and player responsibility.
"I think it's going to be a lot more fun. It's not going to be soccer, it's still going to be football, but it's going to be a faster-paced game," Harbaugh said.
- A new smart phone app lets people pose in pictures with Ray Lewis. [The Baltimore Sun]
- Bengals running back Bernard Scott appears to be healthy, but told reporters that he's not going to play against the Ravens because he isn't in football shape yet. That could change the workload for BenJarvus Green-Ellis, who has missed the last three preseason games with an injured foot. He only returned to practice himself last week. [Cincy Jungle]
- @RavensInsider: Terrell Suggs declined an interview request, said, 'I'm not talking until I'm playing.' So, no update for a while as his torn Achilles heals [Twitter]
- @JasonButtCBS: Upshaw said he's down to 271 pounds when asked if he reached goal of 270. Talk about being honest, he could've skimped on the last pound. [Twitter]
- @mzenitz: Asked what #Ravens defender he sees being most poised for a breakthrough season, DE Pernell McPhee responded, ", no doubt." [Twitter]
- @mzenitz: McPhee on Kruger: "That guy has got [as much athleticism](Tweet: http://twitter.com/mzenitz/statuses/243408399595880448) as any guy I know. He's a great pass rusher and he's got a great get-off." #Ravens [Twitter]
- @RavensInsider: Ravens safety James Ihedigbo's one-year contract is worth $700,000, had no signing bonus, $540,000 against cap under minimum salary benefit [Twitter]