Practice Report: Rookie Brandon Williams Out Indefinitely

Posted on September 02, 2013


By Joe Platania

OWINGS MILLS -- While the Ravens have liked what they've seen from their draft class in general -- and third-round nose tackle Brandon Williams in particular -- they may have to do without the massive, athletic rookie for a while.


Williams was spotted with a walking boot in the team facility before the Sept. 2 practice. He has a right foot injury of undetermined origin, and there is no timetable for his return.

Williams, from Missouri Southern State, earned Internet fame for his ability to do handstands and to walk on his hands as well. He has quick feet, a good first step and the agility reminiscent of Haloti Ngata when he came to the Ravens seven years ago.

Even though his best position is thought to be nose tackle, Williams is currently listed on depth chart as a backup defensive tackle to Arthur Jones, who has been dealing with a personal health issue during the last week.

Ngata is currently shown on the depth chart as the first-string nose tackle, backed up by former first-round draft pick Terrence Cody.

During the preseason, Williams recorded 10 tackles (seven solo) and a sack.

Not practicing on a warm, breezy afternoon session were Williams; Jones; center Ryan Jensen (foot); tight end Dennis Pitta (hip); and wideout Deonte Thompson (foot), who did seem to be walking with much less difficulty around the team headquarters.

In a switch from the usual routine, the offense wore white at practice, while the defense wore purple jerseys. The visiting Ravens will be wearing their road whites Sept. 5 against Denver.

Rookie linebacker John Simon has switched his jersey number from 47 to 94, which 2010 second-round draft pick Sergio Kindle last wore, two years ago.

Also, the Ravens filled out their eight-man practice squad by cutting tackle Jordan Devey and adding running back Jonas Gray and wideout Gerrard Sheppard (Towson).

The practice squad now contains five offensive players and three that play defensive positions.

Gray, who was originally signed by the Miami Dolphins before being released, is a Notre Dame product who took the spot ostensibly reserved for Bobby Rainey, who was claimed by the Cleveland Browns.

As a Fighting Irish senior, Gray ran for 791 yards and scored 12 touchdowns.

The 5-foot-9, 225-pounder has a body type similar to that of former Indianapolis back Delone Carter, for whom the Ravens traded but got little push during the team's final preseason game. Gray now joins ex-teammate Kapron Lewis-Moore in Baltimore.

Sheppard looked to be more of a waiver-wire risk, but he went unclaimed and has returned to Baltimore.

Sheppard will again wear jersey No. 7, while Gray has been assigned No. 35, previously assigned to running back/special teamer Anthony Allen.

***

JOEY P'S TRIVIA TIME: Today's question:

September is a time for Labor Day, the start of the football season, the beginning of the academic year and crisp autumn temperatures. It is also a time to solemnly remember one of the most tragic occurrences in American history, the 9/11 attacks.

Which former Raven, who is still active in the league, has a Sept. 11 birthday?

The answer will be revealed at the bottom of today's column.

***

QUOTE OF THE DAY: Besides the "Charm City Chuck" -- the last-minute, game-tying pass Joe Flacco threw to Jacoby Jones to send the playoff game at Denver to overtime -- one thing most Ravens fans remember about that double-OT win was how cold the temperature was.

That's why playing at Denver couldn't rattle Ray Rice.

"I was born in New York," the running back said. "So, I wouldn't care if it was a blizzard."

***

JOEY P'S TRIVIA TIME ANSWER:
Here's the question we asked you earlier in this column:

September is a time for Labor Day, the start of the football season, the beginning of the academic year and crisp autumn temperatures. It is also a time to solemnly remember one of the most tragic occurrences in American history, the 9/11 attacks.

Which former Raven, who is still active in the league, has a Sept. 11 birthday?
   
ANSWER:


The league's active leader in interceptions, former Ravens safety Ed Reed, was born on Sept. 11, 1978, meaning that he will have observed his 35th birthday by the time he and his new Houston Texans teammates will visit M&T Bank Stadium for a Week Three clash with the Ravens.

Reed was the Ravens' co-leader in pickoffs last year, sharing the team lead with Cary Williams. One of Reed's four interceptions came on the night before his birthday last year.

During the team's 44-13 blowout win against the Cincinnati Bengals during the annual Monday-night Week One doubleheader, Reed intercepted an Andy Dalton pass and scampered 34 yards down the left sideline and into the west (Russell Street) end zone.

Reed also made a big play on the eve of his birthday during the 2006 season opener.

As the Ravens put forth a dominating defensive effort, Reed intercepted a pass during a shutout win at Tampa Bay, returning it for 3 yards. That season, the Ravens went on to register their best-ever regular-season mark, winning 13 games and capturing the second of their four AFC North division titles.

Posted Sept. 2, 2013

next up:

Broncos' Champ Bailey Back At Practice

September 02, 2013

Advertisement

Baltimore Top Stories

R. McClain Reinstated

The Ravens reinstated linebacker Rolando McClain, according to the April 17 NFL transactions list.

Minor League Spotlight

Mike Yastrzemski and Glynn Davis are valuable run producers in the Orioles' farm system.

PressBox In Print

Read all the articles and columns from PressBox's April 2014 print edition.

READY TO CONTEND?

Ravens have addressed some offseason concerns, thanks to a robust free-agent crop.

Advertisement

Get PressBox's Free Weekly Newsletter

Email:

For Sports Fans

PressBox Lax Weekly

Sign up for our new weekly high school lacrosse email, with key matchups, recruiting and more.

Summer Camp Guide

Check out PressBox's 2014 Summer Camp Guide for local sports camps.

Second Thursday Lunch

Baltimore's sports experts and icons in a series of lunches by sports fans, for sports fans

Advertisement
x