The Ravens are bringing practice to the people again this coming Saturday.
The team will hold the first of its three open-to-the-public workouts Saturday at 5 p.m. at M&T Bank Stadium. Gates open at 3:30 p.m. Admission is free, though there will be a 10 parking fee for stadium lots, which will open at noon for cold tailgating.
The Ravens were roundly criticized for moving training camp from the very public setting of McDaniel College in Westminster to the very private setting of the Ravens Under Armour Performance Center in Owings Mills. They sought these public practices as a way to soothe some of the hard feelings and reconnect with fans who can no longer see preseason workouts in Westminster.
Additional public practices will be held on Sunday, Aug. 12, at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis, and on Sunday, Aug. 19, at Stevenson Universitys athletic complex in Owings Mills.
"It's important for us to connect with as many of our fans as we can during training camp," Ravens president Dick Cass said in a statement earlier this year. "We know we can't duplicate the fan experiences we had at McDaniel College, but these opportunities will give many people an opportunity to get up close and personal outside of our home games.
Last season was the first that the Ravens did not use McDaniels campus for its training camp, a move precipitated by the NFL lockout. This past winter, the Ravens announced that the training camp move to the teams Owings Mills headquarters would be permanent.
The Ravens held a preseason workout at M&T Bank Stadium last year and drew roughly 24,000 fans.
To paraphrase Allen Iverson, were talkin about practice, so expect to see most of the Ravens current 90-man roster go through positional drills and some 11-on-11 drills with light hitting. The Ravens also are likely to simulate special teams situations, which will give fans a good look at the kicking battle between Billy Cundiff and rookie Justin Tucker.
In addition, the Ravens have announced that 3,500 special seats will be held for active duty military personnel and veterans and their immediate families as part of Military Appreciation Day. The servicemen and women will be asked to show valid military ID when entering the stadium.
Saturdays forecast calls for partly cloudy skies and a high of 90 degrees.