Harbaugh commends Ravens for ‘phenomenal’ practice in excessive heat
— The U.S. National Weather Service issued an excessive heat warning throughout Maryland for Saturday.
But that did not stop the Ravens from turning in a quality practice Saturday morning.
“Today was a good one. Today was a tough one,” linebacker Albert McClellan said. “This day here showed a lot of people’s character – who’s willing to work and who’s not willing to work. Today we really found out who’s got it and who needs to continue to work.”
The Ravens took the field at the Under Armour Performance Center at 8:45 a.m. Practice was scheduled to end at 11:15, but wrapped up about 20 minutes early.
“In my three years here, that probably was the toughest practice that we’ve had,” linebacker Zach Orr said. “We knew it was going to be a tough practice, coach talked to us about it yesterday. We’re just really proud of how the team came out and went after it. I felt like we got better. It’s easy to get better when you first come out here for camp, but these are the days where you really build your football team.”
Temperatures were in the 90s during practice but AccuWeather listed the RealFeel as 104 degrees. The heat index neared 110. A cloudless sky offered no relief from the relentless sun.
To make matters worse, the Ravens practiced with small numbers. The team had just three tight ends on the field Saturday (Ben Watson, Darren Waller and Nick Boyle).
Head coach John Harbaugh said it became important to monitor the players.
“We monitor. That’s the main thing, you monitor individuals. The training staff and recovery and performance coaches really keep an eye on all that. The training staff did phenomenal with that. And we give them more time in between periods and more water breaks,” he said. “It’s not as tough when you have your full numbers, but we were down wide receivers and tight ends today and those guys do a lot of running … We really had to watch those guys, but what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger and everybody’s still breathing.”
Harbaugh said wide receiver Kaelin Clay injured his foot during practice, but it was unrelated to the heat.
Like Orr, Harbaugh was also impressed with the quality of work the Ravens put in despite the heat.
“It was hot. I really commend the guys,” he said. “The numbers were low overall for the practice. The guys that practiced just did a phenomenal job – it was a fast practice, it was sharp. I think it’s one of the things that you look for in training camp.”
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Ravens linebacker Albert McClellan takes part in a drill during Saturday’s practice. Players participated despite excessive heat at the Under Armour Performance Center.