NFL Ruling: Ravens Lose One Week Of Organized Team Activities, Fined


The NFL's decision regarding the Ravens' use of pads during rookie minicamp was handed down Thursday afternoon.

The Ravens will forfeit next week's Organized Team Activities (OTAs) June 1-3, and the organization and Head Coach John Harbaugh have been fined.

"We made a mistake and we are sorry for that," the Ravens said in a statement. "We accept the NFL discipline."

Baltimore will be without three of its 10 total OTA workouts, but will still have all of mandatory minicamp and training camp.

The Ravens reportedly used pads during a five-minute portion of a special teams punt drill. Under the Collective Bargaining Agreement, teams are not permitted to use pads until training camp.

Baltimore also lost a week of offseason practices in 2010 for violating the rules concerning the intensity and tempo of drills during OTAs.

"It is what it is. We'll lose them," Harbaugh said. "It's what they decided was appropriate, so we'll respect that."

Harbaugh gave an explanation for why the Ravens wore pads.

"There's the CBA the way it's written word-for-word, we've read it all. There are side letters and there are amendments to side letters. There's a handbook and there are things that get added to the handbook regularly that come out in memos. There are things that you look at and you say, 'I think we've got an opportunity here to gain some ground with our rookies,'" Harbaugh said.

"It was a rookie developmental day. It wasn't the case. It was wrong. I read it the wrong way and it's on me. Any other details about it – I don't think anybody wants to hear any of that stuff. I think the bottom line is, it's on me."

The punishment was announced during Thursday's practice, the final day of the first week of OTAs.

Without practices next week, Harbaugh said the team would try to look at it as perhaps a blessing. After six weeks of hard work, maybe the team needed a break.

Harbaugh shared with the media what he told the players and coaches.

"'There's not one player or one coach in this room that should worry about it for one second. You shouldn't have an anxiety about it, because it's on me,'" Harbaugh told them. "It's completely me. It was my decision, it was my effort and that's the situation that we're in. We'll adjust, we'll adapt and we'll still become the best football we can be."

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