Head Coach John Harbaugh
Opening statement:"Good to see everybody. It was a good, tough practice. [I'm] proud of the guys – really appreciate the way our guys work, the way they fought through practice. We got a lot of situational work done. First down coming out, backed up four minute – all those kind of things today were the emphasis. Anything you saw as far as injury, there was nothing serious. Everything was minor, so we are in good shape."
**John, Asa Jackson reportedly suspended. What's your reaction to that, and do you think that will do to the corner spot? *(Aaron Wilson) *"Reaction to that is that you have to follow the rules. You don't follow the rules, you get suspended. That's a fair rule. There's really no place for that. He's getting what he deserves. As far as what it does to our corner depth, that's one last corner we have. We will be missing Asa [Jackson] for the first eight weeks. Whether he will back after that, time will tell."
**Does that affect his standing when you guys have to make a decision at the end of this month? *(Jason Butt) *"It really doesn't, because it doesn't count against your 53-man roster. It just means that he is out of the picture. What he needs to do is have a great camp and make us want him back after eight weeks and try to be in position to help us during the second half of the season. That will be a big challenge for him. We've talked about it quite a bit, and he's up for that challenge."
What is a plus trait for two guys competing at the center position? (Chris Miller)"They have to be able to run the offense – so to speak – up front. That's for sure. It's not simple. And, those guys are both smart guys, and they've done a good job with that. That's a must trait."
What does it mean to get away from here and go to Annapolis for practice? (Ryan Mink)"It will be exciting. I think our guys are really looking forward to it. I'm expecting a full stadium down there in Annapolis. The Naval Academy has just been tremendous hosts. We love going down there. We respect everything that the Naval Academy stands for. They have been great to us. We can't wait."
We talked so much in the offseason about all the changes on the defense. Watching practice you see the 16, 17 guys if not more could really factor in. How exciting is that to have that kind of versatility? (Luke Jones) "I've been excited about our defense every year going in – no less so this year for different reasons. Yes, we are excited. I don't want to paint it like it's different than any other year. It's just different. (Reporter: "Just with some new parts and how it seems as though you can use those guys in so many different areas.") We have a lot of versatile players, is probably your point. It's true. We have a lot of guys, and we play them in different spots. That's how we've always done it as much as any other year we have guys that are able to do that. Five-techniques play three-techniques, three-techniques play nose. Outside linebackers, some of them kick down, some of them kick inside – whether it's pass rush or if it's in a package to inside linebacker. A lot of the DBs can play nickel. It's good."
**Just after a few days he's been here, but what have you seen from [Visanthe] Shiancoe from the last couple of days? *(Matt Zenitz) *"I'd say he's done a really good job, but there is a learning curve. He physically looks like he is in good shape. He is running routes well. He catches the ball well, and he's learning the offense. That's not easy. He's not up to full speed because he's not there mentally yet. But, we sure have a lot of talent and ability. He's doing a good job."
What have you seen from Josh Bynes? He stepped in during last season; just kind of what you see… (Aaron Wilson) "Josh [Bynes] has done well. He's competing for a starting spot, so I don't know what more you can say than that. That's probably the highest praise you could give a guy."
CB Chykie Brown
On how training camp has been going for him so far: "It's going good for me right now. As you can tell in my play, everything is starting to slow down to me now. It's starting to come to me easy where I can see it before it happens. That's putting in a lot of film work – a lot of hard work off the field. It's all easing up for me now."
On what adjustments he has made to get to this point with his abilities: "It was over a period of time. Nothing is just going to happen. Just luck – hard work makes luck. It took … I've been in the league three years now, so it took me my first two years to get to this point where I'm at right now. A lot of hard work."
On defensive coordinator Dean Pees saying that he may be the most improved defensive player in two years: "It's a blessing, especially [coming] from a man like Dean Pees. He is a great guy. He is a great coach. His background speaks for itself. Me, I'm just not going to eat off of that. I'm hungry. I'm going to keep building off of that. That's a great bar he set for me, but I have to keep stacking good days on top of good days."
On how important S Ed Reed was to his development: "Ed [Reed] was my mentor. Coming in, they put me with him – for me to go under his wings. He showed me the ropes and things about being a professional football player and all of that. They had me by his locker, so every day I was getting a new quote or a new speech from him. Everything he did, I would just learn – trying to see how he stayed in the league so long, year by year. I just took every little thing he did; I just took notes on him."
CB Corey Graham
On the difference coming into camp after having played so much defensively last season: "It's a little different. It's definitely an opportunity to go out there and show what I can do. Last year was the same thing for me. Obviously, I got an opportunity to play a little bit last year. They know I can play on defense, so it's a different mindset, but you've got to do the same thing. You've got to come in here, grind and just try to get better and better every day."
On this being one of the most talented secondaries he's ever played on: "Yes, it definitely is. We've got a great group here. Pretty much everybody is capable of going out there and playing and getting the job done. It's going to be interesting. It's going to be a fun year for us. We feel like we can go out there and play with anybody."
On the play of CB Chykie Brown: "He's been doing great. He's been getting better and better every day, and that's the mentality of everybody. You want to come in here … These guys are making us work. Joe [Flacco] is doing an amazing job. The receivers are running a million and one different routes and they're challenging us. We're just trying to get better and better every day, and just continue to grind and get ready for the season."
On whether CB Lardarius Webb looks as good as he did prior to getting injured: "He's definitely coming along. Every day, he's getting more and more reps. He's out there making plays. Yesterday, he had an interception. Today, he's making pass breakups. He's 'Webby' – Webby is being Webby. [It seems that] he's pretty much come along pretty good to me. Hopefully, they'll keep giving him more and more reps, and he'll find a way to get out there with us."
On if he has shed his special teams role: "I don't know if I shed it. *(laughter) *When I look at the depth chart, I'm pretty much on all of them still at the top, so I don't know if I've shed that role. I think it will be something that I'll always do. I'll always, in some way, be on at least one or two special team phases. I enjoy it. It's tough – definitely when you're doing a lot of defensive reps, it's tough to do all of the special teams. But, you go out there and just try to do what you can and just try to help out in any way that you possibly can."
On if he feels he has shed the perception of him as a special teams guy: "I hope so. I hope so. That's what I wanted to do last year when I came in. I wanted to get the opportunity to play on defense, and I was fortunate to get that chance. You just try to make the best out of the opportunity. Hopefully, coach believes in you as a defender, and that's what I've tried to do – just try to be the best defender I can possibly be and just get better and better. It's been good so far."
On if he's excited to practice in Annapolis on Sunday: "Yeah, it's something different. [There's] a big crowd out there. We'll get a chance to play in front of a lot of people [in] a different atmosphere. You always want to get away and do something different, so it'll be exciting for us to get out there."
On what he gets out of the scrimmage game: "Competing. It's been very competitive here all training camp. The receivers have competed well. They're getting better and better every play, every day. Joe's been amazing. He's putting the ball where his guy can get it. So, it's been great. I think it's going to help us in the long run."
On what he makes of the perceived competition between himself and CB Jimmy Smith: "All of us [are] going to have the opportunity to go out there and play. That's just how it is. You've got to have some type of storyline. It's just another storyline. Every day you come out here, you compete, no matter what. Both of us are going to go out there and do the best that we possibly can, and when we get out there, we're going to make as many plays as we can. That's just how it is – [you] make the best out of your opportunities."
On tackling to the ground in practice: "It's a little different. Every coach is different. We feel like we want to be a physical defense. We want to make sure we're ready to tackle when the first game comes around, so that's something you have got to do. If you want to be a good tackling defense, you've got to tackle. So, that's how it is. We're going out there, we're trying to tackle, [and] we're trying to make plays. You want to be smart about it. You don't want to get any guys hurt, but you've got to prepare and get ready for the first game."
CB Jimmy Smith
On how coming into camp in better shape helps his performance:"It helps me tremendously, because I don't have any back issues or hamstring issues. Or when I come in overweight, if I'm playing too heavy, then I start to get little minor aches and pains that kind of don't let me play how I want to play all the time."
On the competition between the cornerbacks:"Yes, everyone wants to become a starter in the NFL, so it means something to us individually. But at the same time, you are absolutely right – it's a pass-happy league. So, no matter how it goes, we're all going to be playing on the field. We're all going to be out there. We don't know exactly when 'Webby' [Lardarius Webb] is going to be ready anyway, so right now we've got to take the people that we've got and make the best out of it."
On potentially having a breakthrough year: "I do feel like this is the year that I need to step up and become a big-time player. But, there is no added extra pressure or anything like that."
On how camp has gone thus far as a whole: "I think I've been making some plays, getting my hands on some balls and doing a good job out there on the island. So far, so good."
On the training camp battle to be the third wide receiver: "I don't know. That is up the coaches. That isn't really up to me."
On how different camp is without S Ed Reed: "Ed Reed is a special player. He's one of those guys that … He sees stuff that nobody else sees. The playmaking ability that he brings to the table, you can't really replace that. Michael Huff is a great player. He's been doing it for a while, so hopefully, he can step in and make some big-time plays."