Baltimore Ravens: Will Rackley

OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- Here are some quick thoughts after the Baltimore Ravens completed their second practice of this week's three-day minicamp:

  • Tempers flared in the 90-degree heat with the first on-field scuffles of camp. The first one involved two rookies: tight end Crockett Gillmore and defensive tackle Timmy Jernigan started a fight that ended with a small pile-up of players. Then, in the final half hour of practice, wide receiver Steve Smith shoved Lardarius Webb after he felt the cornerback contested a pass too vigorously for non-contact minicamp. Smith shoved Webb, and Webb then retaliated. After this exchange, Steve Smith immediately caught a pass against Jimmy Smith and Webb followed that up by knocking down a pass away from Owen Daniels on the next play. Smith and Webb are very competitive players.
  • [+] EnlargeBaltimore Ravens
    Patrick Semansky/AP PhotoWednesday's minicamp saw a whole lot of action from the Baltimore Ravens' receiver corps.
    Of all the practices open to the media this offseason, this was the sharpest one for quarterback Joe Flacco. There was a long stretch where the ball didn't hit the ground in full-team and seven-on-seven drills. His best throw was a deep one down the middle of the field to Steve Smith, who got behind safety Matt Elam. Flacco was spot-on with most of his throws.
  • While Flacco excelled, the wide receivers stood out for the wrong reasons. There were too many drops for a second straight day. Marlon Brown, Torrey Smith, Jace Davis and Jacoby Jones all let passes go through their hands in a short period of team drills. Defensive players do push-ups on the field when they drop interceptions. Maybe the same rule should apply to the Ravens' wide receivers.
  • Wide receiver Jeremy Butler continues to make plays this offseason. The rookie from Tennessee-Martin is trying to become the latest undrafted success story for the Ravens. Butler is making more catches than the other players who are competing for one of the last receiver spots on the team such as Michael Campanaro, Deonte Thompson and LaQuan Williams. Butler's path got easier when the Ravens waived Aaron Mellette, too.
  • It looks like it will be an uphill battle for Will Rackley to make the team. A third-round pick in 2011, Rackley started 25 games for the Jacksonville Jaguars before being released earlier this year. Right now, Rackley is running with the Ravens' third team and is behind backups A.Q. Shipley and Ryan Jensen on the depth chart.
  • Defensive end Kapron Lewis-Moore joined the list of injured players not practicing after hurting his hamstring toward the end of Tuesday's workout. That led to more increased reps for rookie Brent Urban with the second team. The players not practicing for a second straight day are: defensive tackle Terrence Cody (hip), offensive lineman Jah Reid (calf), wide receiver Kamar Aiken (lower leg) and offensive tackle Parker Graham (undisclosed).
A look at what happened with the Baltimore Ravens during my personal bye week:
  • News: Running back Ray Rice on Friday said he "failed miserably," his first public comments since being arrested after a Feb. 15 altercation in Atlantic City, New Jersey, in which he allegedly struck then-fiancée Janay Palmer. He was accepted into a pretrial intervention program that will result in the dismissal of his assault charge if he completes the program. Reaction: While Rice didn't take any questions from reporters, he still has to answer to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. Once that meeting takes place, the league will announce how it will discipline Rice under the personal conduct policy. Rice is likely facing a suspension, and my guess is it'll be two to four games.
  • News: The Ravens and M&T Bank announced they reached a 10-year, $60 million extension on the naming rights of Baltimore's football stadium. The original deal began in 2003 and was set to expire in 2017. Reaction: I've never been a fan of putting a corporate name to sporting venues. The names usually change so often that you can't remember what they're called. But, in this instance, the Ravens have secured M&T Bank through the final year of the Ravens' stadium lease.
  • News: Guard Will Rackley, a 2011 third-round pick by the Jacksonville Jaguars, was signed by the Ravens. Rackley was cut by the Jaguars in March. Reaction: This gives the Ravens another option on the offensive line. If Rackley impresses, he could start at left guard and Kelechi Osemele can move to right tackle. The good news is Rackley has experience starting next to left tackle Eugene Monroe during their days in Jacksonville. The bad news is Rackley was one of the lowest-graded guards last season by Pro Football Focus.
  • News: Assistant general manager Eric DeCosta had tight end Eric Ebron atop his wish list for the Ravens with the No. 17 overall pick in this year's draft. Ebron was drafted by the Detroit Lions at No. 10. Reaction: Ebron is the type of playmaking talent that would've helped the NFL's fourth-worst offense. Tight end wasn't a pressing need after the Ravens re-signed Dennis Pitta and added Owen Daniels. But neither has the same athleticism as Ebron. The Ravens can thank former offensive coordinator Jim Caldwell for spoiling that.
The Ravens added depth to their offensive line on Monday when they signed guard Will Rackley, who has 25 career NFL starts.

Rackley had been a free agent since March when the Jaguars cut the 2011 third-round draft pick. He started extensively at left guard as a rookie and last season. The 6-foot-3, 310-pounder missed the 2012 season after sustaining an ankle injury.

Rackley started all but one of the 26 games he played for the Jaguars.

The Ravens also signed running back Shaun Chapas and tight end Phillip Supernaw on Monday. Supernaw, who has spent time with the Houston Texans, participated in the Ravens’ rookie minicamp on a tryout basis.

The Ravens made room on their roster by releasing tight end Matt Furstenburg, defensive lineman Cody Larsen and outside linebacker D.J. Bryant.

Furstenberg, a Maryland product, and Larsen spent last season on the practice squad.

Bryant, a Baltimore native, had been with the Ravens since 2012 but he did not appear in a game. He spent last season on injured reserve after hurting his leg.

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