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Practice Report: 10 Observations From Third Ravens OTA

DT Justin Madubuike

The Ravens are wrapping up their three weeks of organized team activities this week.

Here are 10 observations from Wednesday's practice:

  1. The theme of the day was defensive players getting their hands on the ball as the pressure was dialed up with a lot of "Cover Zero" blitzes. Nobody touched it more than defensive tackle Justin Madubuike, who batted away three passes at the line, including one that was intercepted by Marlon Humphrey.
  2. Rashod Bateman shook off an early drop to make a couple other nifty grabs, one on a low pass that was a little behind him as he went to the turf, then a deep touchdown behind rookie cornerback Jalyn Armour-Davis on a pretty throw from undrafted rookie quarterback Anthony Brown.
  3. Rookie safety Kyle Hamilton continues to impress. One play, he got props from a coach when he read and undercut a route that forced the quarterback to pull back a pass. Then Hamilton showed another area where he could be an asset. Lined up on the edge of the defensive line, Hamilton brought pressure and leapt into the throwing lane. When the 6-foot-4 rookie gets in the throwing lane, it is extremely hard to get the ball around him. Hamilton skied and nearly came down with an interception that was thrown into his stomach.
  4. In addition to Humphrey's interception, cornerback Denzel Williams also had a pick-six when he undercut an outside route. That had Humphrey and Tony Jefferson running down the field with him in celebration. Chuck Clark came underneath another pass for a breakup that was nearly a pick.
  5. Rookie cornerback Damarion "Pepe" Williams had a strong day with frequent tight coverage and a taste of his swagger. After one play, Bateman told him he could have taken him deep for a big play if he wanted to. Williams fired back, "Then go!" After practice, Head Coach John Harbaugh said Williams and Armour-Davis have been impressive and will play on defense this year.
  6. Rookie tight end Charlie Kolar had a couple nice grabs in traffic, including a high one against Brandon Stephens that showed how tough Kolar's length is to defend (though Stephens has to pull off in OTAs). Kolar seems to possess the same Mark Andrews quality of finding open spaces in zone coverage.
  7. Interesting to see rookie punter Jordan Stout wearing a Go Pro on his helmet. That will give he and coaches good film to see what he's seeing and dissect his holds.
  8. Patrick Queen got a lot of props from teammates when getting his hands on a pass with a nice read and break on an underneath route. It's clear that Queen has a better understanding of his pass coverage responsibilities.
  9. Undrafted rookie wide receiver Shemar Bridges does a good job of using his 6-foot-4, 207-pound body to box out defenders and make contested catches.
  10. Wide receiver James Proche II had the offensive play of the day when he hauled in a long catch on a lofted jump ball down the sideline. Proche wrestled the ball away from Denzel Williams.

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