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Offensive Coordinator Cam Cameron was pretty hard on himself when judging his performance in the second half of the Ravens' 17-12 win over the Carolina Panthers.
Cameron placed the blame squarely on his shoulders.
"I flunked the second half, so everybody's off the hook in the second half of that game," Cameron said. "Give Cam Cameron an 'F' in the second half, and give anybody that played in the second half a passing grade.
"We'll do a pass/fail in the second half."
A big part of that was the Panthers' relentless pass rush and deep corps of defensive linemen facing Baltimore's depleted offensive line. Smith was sacked three times and repeatedly scrambled for extra time behind the line of scrimmage.
Cameron said he wasn't happy with the job he did play-calling for that less-experienced group.
"You've got to give your guys a chance," Cameron noted. "We don't just call the same plays with one group that you call in another group and expect them to work. You've got a lot of young guys on the offensive line, and you've got to work that a little bit."
The Ravens did score a touchdown in the second half, an 8-yard run by Smith. But that came after a 57-yard punt return by Prince Miller to the red zone.
"We're going to improve in the second half in these preseason games," Cameron determinedly stated.
Hale's Status Unclear
Ravens interior offensive lineman David Hale was carted off the field during Monday's morning practice in an offensive/defensive lineman drill.
Hale got locked up with defensive tackle Haloti Ngata and tumbled backwards, landing hard on the turf.
The 6-foot-6, 315-pounder remained on the ground for about 10 minutes as the linemen walked to another field. Hale was surrounded by trainers, Head Coach John Harbaugh and tackleOniel Cousins before he was gingerly helped onto the cart and taken to the training room.
The Ravens did not comment on Hale's status, but he has suffered from back injuries in the past.
"He's been banged up a little bit – some back spasms and stuff," Cameron noted. "But, I was not over to that drill."
Gooden Wears Red Jersey
Linebacker Tavares Goodendonned a red mesh top over his practice jersey, signaling his non-contact status.
Gooden left the Panthers game with a bad back, but he seemed to run well on Monday.
"He got hurt, but I don't know the difference between hurt and sore," said Defensive Coordinator Greg Mattison. "He came out of the game. He got hit from the side, and he twisted his neck, which carried on down into his back."
Gooden saw some reps with the starting defense in its sub package, with Jameel McClain continuing to hold on to the starting Jack linebacker spot.
Known for his coverage skills and speed, Gooden has stood out for his ability in space.
"Tavares has had a very good camp, also," Mattison noted. "He's been really, really important in our sub package, being the dime linebacker. [He's got] the ability to cover people, be able to run, and he's also done a good job as a backup inside linebacker in 'Raven' [coverage]."
Parmele Gets the First Kickoff Again
Jalen Parmele went only 28 yards on the Ravens' first kickoff return of the preseason – not bad, but definitely not ideal. He'll get a chance to do it again Saturday against the Washington Redskins.
"Although the return didn't go very far, he ran it just like we wanted to," said Special Teams Coordinator Jerry Rosburg. "He ran it like Jalen does. He's a strong runner, and he pounded it up in there. Right now he's the lead dog in that particular phase, and he'll get the first rep again this week."
Parmele grabbed that kickoff returner role towards the end of last season when he took back nine kickoffs for 283 yards, a 31.4-yard average.
Against the Panthers, David Reed had two kickoff returns for a total of 40 yards and Prince Miller had one for 22.
Mattison Not Concerned With Run Defense
The Ravens allowed Carolina to rush for a 5.5-yard average, with Pro Bowl running back DeAngelo Williams breaking the seal with a 23-yard run during the game's first series.
While Mattison isn't concerned, the run defense will be a point of emphasis this week.
"It wasn't so much that guys weren't going hard and guys weren't being physical," said Mattison. "It's just that we weren't in the right run fits, and guys got out of their gaps a little bit, and we didn't fit correctly. We've addressed that, and we'll get challenged on that again this game."
- Le'Rron McClain fumbled on the first play of the red-zone portion. Defensive end Cory Redding recovered.
- Safety Tom Zbikowski picked off Joe Flacco and zig-zagged through the defense, pitching to Terrell Suggs around the 20-yard line. Suggs slowed up before he hit the end zone.
- During seven-one-seven work, the receivers were the stars. Anquan Boldin outfought Travis Fisher for a leaping grab in the end zone, Mark Clayton caught two perfect touchdown passes of over 20 yards through coverage, and Flacco looped a teardrop over Donte' Stallworth's shoulder for a score.
- Both Billy Cundiff and Shayne Graham were perfect Monday, with Cundiff nailing a 58-yard field goal.