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DT Jernigan has sights set on making Pro Bowl next season


DT Jernigan has sights set on making Pro Bowl next season

OWINGS MILLS – Ravens defensive tackle Timmy Jernigan expects big things for himself next season. Just ask him.

“I want to go to the Pro Bowl,” Jernigan said following Wednesday’s OTA practice. “I’m not even going to sit here and lie to you. I definitely want to win more games. That’s first. Help the defense get even better.

“We have huge shoes to fill with Haloti (Ngata) missing. It’s definitely going to be a group effort for all of us, not just me.”

With Jernigan and Brandon Williams, the Ravens have two talented young tackles they are counting on to handle the void left by Ngata’s trade to the Lions. How the Ravens deal with Ngata’s departure will be a key to their season. He was a cornerstone of the Ravens’ run defense for nine seasons, making the Pro Bowl five times.

Now Jernigan will be asked to play a bigger role defensively, after showing his athleticism and ability to make plays in the backfield as a rookie in 2014. Jernigan does not possess Ngata’s power or experience. But Jernigan is quicker, and certainly has star potential if he continues to improve.

That is Jernigan’s goal this season – to raise his game to another level. He studied Ngata last season, and learned plenty.

“How to practice, and how to be perfect,” Jernigan said. “Knowing when he could take a chance going inside on a play. Little things like that. The guy knew plays before they even happened. That’s definitely what I learned from him, the way that he prepared and got ready for games.”

Jernigan said he has grown quickly, competing daily against Ravens guards Marshal Yanda and Kelechi Osemele in practice.

“The blessing about playing for the Ravens is I get to go against Kelechi and Yanda every day,” Jernigan said. “To me I think they’re they two best guards in the league.”

Ravens coach John Harbaugh likes the direction in which Jernigan is headed.

“He’s more confident in what he’s doing defensively,” Harbaugh said. “He likes to play to his strengths, his quickness and explosiveness. I can’t say it’s a dramatic difference, because he’s very confident, but he was really confident last year. He’s a confident guy. He has really high expectations for himself.”

Expectations like making the Pro Bowl.


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Ravens sign Michael Crabtree to three-year deal

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Ravens sign Michael Crabtree to three-year deal

The Baltimore Ravens have signed wide receiver Michael Crabtree to a three-year deal on Friday according to general manager and executive vice president Ozzie Newsome.

The deal is apparently worth $21 million, according to Adam Schefter.

After being released by the Raiders on Thursday following the signing of Jordy Nelson, Crabtree heads to the Ravens less than 24 hours later.


The 31-year-old is coming off a 2017 season when he recorded 58 receptions for 618 yards and eight touchdowns. In 2016 he posted 89 receptions for 1,003 yards and eight touchdowns.

Since 2015, the Texas Tech product has scored 25 receiving touchdowns, the fifth-most in the NFL. Crabtree and Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown are the only NFL players to post at least eight touchdown catches in each of the past three seasons.


In all, Crabtree has played nine NFL seasons – six of them with San Francisco (2009-14) and three with Oakland (2015-17). The former first-round draft pick (10th overall, Texas Tech) has registered 579 receptions for 6,870 yards (11.9 avg.) and 51 touchdowns in 125 career games (122 starts).

“Michael has played very well against the Ravens, so we know firsthand the attributes he brings to the game,” Newsome said in a team statement. “He is a smart, tough, physical receiver who battles for the ball. We like his temperament and believe he is a good fit for our football team, on and off the field.”

Since he entered the NFL in 2009, Crabtree’s 51 receiving scores rank 10th among active wide receivers, while his receptions (579) are seventh, and his receiving yards (6,870) are 12th.

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Ryan Grant's health issue and why the Ravens couldn't control voiding his contract

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Ryan Grant's health issue and why the Ravens couldn't control voiding his contract

The most obvious move in the NFL this offseason was the Ravens signing a new wide receiver (or three). It was less obvious why the team decided to commit so much money to former Redskins receiver Ryan Grant.

Grant has long been beloved by his coaches and teammates, but the results have never been there on game day. He has some potential to improve if given a larger role in a team's offense, which he likely would have had in Baltimore, but it never made much sense to offer him a 4-year contract worth nearly 30 million, with $14.5 million guaranteed.

Thankfully for fans who were uninspired by the reported agreement, Grant was unable to pass his physical and will not be joining the team.


At a press conference Friday morning, GM Ozzie Newsome called the void a "medical decision" that Newsome had no control over. 

NFL insider Ian Rapoport reported that Grant is recovering from a Grade 2 sprained ankle that would need two months rest.

You have to feel for Grant, who by all accounts has worked his tail off for many years just waiting for his chance. It's never easy missing out on nearly $15 million dollars guaranteed, but Grant should be able to find work with another team.

The timing of this news, coming so soon after former Raider Michael Crabtree became available, seemed fishy to some.

At Friday's press conference, Newsome also said the team would have still pursued Crabtree if they signed Grant. 

It's probably not fair to suggest that an NFL franchise would actually so publicly back out of a deal just because another option came along, as any team with that reputation would struggle to attract future free agents. That said, it could end up working out splendidly for the team.

Besides, if all else is equal, shouldn't a team located in Baltimore be going after a guy named CRABtree?