Kennan Reynolds shines in return to Naval Academy
ANNAPOLIS — Returning to the place where he enjoyed a record-breaking career that featured the most rushing touchdowns in college football history, former Navy standout Keenan Reynolds once again found the end zone.
Only this time he did it with his hands rather than his feet.
The mobile quarterbackturned-receiver hauled in a pass down the seam during one-on-one drills, finishing the play in the blue-andyellow checkered end zone to cap a memorable night under the lights at NavyMarine Corps Memorial Stadium on Saturday. It marked a perfect way to end a training camp practice that also saw the former midshipman turn heads with a diving catch and later an athletic grab on a self-tipped pass.
“It was a great place to have one of my better practices since I’ve been with the Ravens. It was only right,” said Reynolds, a secondyear player, who returned to compete on his former home field two summers after Baltimore drafted the 2015 Heisman contender in the sixth round of the NFL Draft. “It was cool to make a play. I said in another interview that [former Ravens wide receiver] Steve Smith told me my rookie year ‘make a play a day and it’ll keep you around.’ I’ve carried that with me since he left and that’s what I strive for each day.”
Reynolds, who finished his collegiate career with an FBS-record 88 rushing touchdowns as the key cog in Navy’s triple-option offense, enters his second NFL season hoping to continue his transition from one of the nation’s top quarterbacks to a professional pass catcher. He is currently battling for a spot on the 53-man roster as both a receiver and returner.
He spent most of last season on the practice squad, but was a healthy inactive in the Ravens’ season finale at Cincinnati.
“What a great night. A great environment – music, a big crowd, a lot of fun. The guys really enjoyed it. One thing to note was Keenan Reynolds. He had a big night,” Ravens head coach John Harbaugh said, unprompted. “I saw his confidence shift to another gear here, and I can guess I can see why. He’s pretty comfortable.”
Reynolds’ big night came only a few hours after he taught his teammates and coaches about one of the country’s more unique football fields — located less than three miles from the United State Naval Academy near downtown Annapolis.
“I just kind of talked about the stadium. You see all the different battles that the United States Navy and military were in, what the stadium means, the memorial and everything on that line. The battle arches in the end zone,” Reynolds said. “Just talking to them about the history and tradition of this place and the men and women that have come through this institution.”
The short trip from the locker room to the gridiron also brought back memories.
“In the locker room, when you walk out on the field, you have that moment of ‘Oh wow, I’m back,” Reynolds said. “It felt like Saturday game day. I had to calm down warming up. I didn’t want to go crazy and get gassed before practice even started.
“Once it got going, I was just focusing on each play as a wide receiver.”
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Former Navy standout Keenan Reynolds returned to Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis Saturday to participate in Baltimore Ravens training camp practice. Reynolds set the FBS record for rushing touchdowns during his career with the Midshipmen.