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Practice Report: Marcus Williams Leads Strong Day for Defense

S Marcus Williams
S Marcus Williams

The offense sputtered during Tuesday's practice, and Marcus Williams caused some of the issues.

Baltimore's talented free safety broke up several passes, including a deflection when matched against rookie tight end Isaiah Likely in the red zone. Williams got his hands on the football to swat away a pass intended for Likely, who's been having a strong training camp and winning battles against almost anyone who has covered him.

Williams wasn't having it. During a one-on-one drill, he stayed in excellent position and swatted the ball away from Likely after he made his break. Williams waved his arms to signal "incomplete" after making the play and received congrats from Chuck Clark and Marlon Humphrey afterward.

The Ravens ranked last in the NFL in pass defense last season, and Williams was signed during free agency to help strengthen Baltimore's secondary. With each training camp practice, Williams is learning more about how he can impact the Ravens' defense after five seasons with the Saints.

"It's not as easy as you think," veteran safety Tony Jefferson said. "Like I was, he was with one team prior to this. You're used to that regimen you had over there. A bunch of new people that you don't really know. I just try to be there for him as much as possible."

Williams didn't look like he needed much help Tuesday and was around the football often. In other training camp practice observations:

  • Rookie cornerback Pepe Williams went high in the air to break up a pass and continued to show good ball skills. Some young corners have trouble locating the football if their backs are turned when the pass is released, but Williams shows no panic and has played bigger than his listed 5-foot-10.
  • All-Pro cornerback Marlon Humphrey returned to practice after missing the previous two, but his time on the field was brief.
  • Rashod Bateman had another strong practice, including a 20-yard touchdown reception from Lamar Jackson. The play was defended well by Kyle Fuller, but Bateman and Jackson were better.
  • Tuesday's practice may have been the hottest of camp, but the Ravens held up well physically. Free agent wide receiver Slade Bolden was one player who left the field early accompanied by a trainer. James Proche II and Bailey Gaither were two other receives who didn't practice.
  • Inside linebacker Patrick Queen kept fullback Patrick Ricard from scoring after catching a pass in the red zone, and cornerback Kevon Seymour almost picked off a pass from Jackson after tight coverage on Bateman. Both of those plays brought a smile from Defensive Coordinator Mike Macdonald when Queen and Seymour returned to the sideline.

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