One of John Harbaugh's offensive tackles had been carted off the field and another was held out of this week's three-day mandatory minicamp so he could focus on his conditioning. After another hot practice under the bright sun, the Ravens' coach didn't feel like sharing any state secrets.
Jah Reid, who spent most of the week at right tackle, was carted off the practice field midway through Thursday's final day of minicamp. His right leg rested on the back of the cart. An assistant then helped Reid gingerly walk inside the practice facility to the trainer's room. Reid did not return. Early indication is that Reid avoided a major injury and the hope is that it is a strained calf, according to a source.
During Harbaugh's daily news conference he didn't offer any insight when asked if Reid was OK.
"Why are you even asking me?" he replied dismissively. "Why? They are fine. Everybody is fine."
A moment later, Harbaugh was asked what starting left tackle Bryant McKinnie will have to show to get back onto the field. McKinnie, who was told earlier this spring he needed to keep his weight in check, spent the week inside the building to improve his conditioning, leading to speculation about his future.
"We will leave that between us," Harbaugh responded. "That's something that is an in-house type of thing right now. Bryant has done a good job. He's worked hard. It's not as simple as some of you guys want to make it. It's just a situation where we are going to do what's best for the team, what's best for Bryant. We want him here. There's no reason he wouldn't be here."
The state of the offensive line, especially the competition at both starting tackle spots, will likely be one of the top story lines greeting the Ravens when they return to Owings Mills for training camp next month. Harbaugh said Thursday that Michael Oher looked "great" at McKinnie's left tackle spot, but Oher again downplayed any suggestion that a camp battle might be brewing.
"I just love playing football and being a part of the team. I'm good either way," said Oher, who started every game at right tackle a season ago. "They drafted me to play football, last time I checked."
J. Jones held out to be safe
A day after Jacoby Jones left practice after landing awkwardly on his leg, the wide receiver watched the final day of minicamp from the sideline.
But Jones, who signed a two-year, $7-million deal on May 8, walked off the field without a limp Thursday and said that the right ankle he injured when he almost collided with cornerback Lardarius Webb during a full-team drill is not a concern heading into training camp.
"It's football," the 27-year-old receiver said. "Things happen, but I'm good. I'm walking around fine. The coaches just wanted to make sure that we take precautions and that I take it easy."
Congratulations, it's a boy!
Quarterback Joe Flacco was not at the final day of minicamp, but he had a good excuse. He and his wife, Dana, announced Thursday morning via Twitter they had welcomed their first child into the world. Stephen Vincent Flacco was officially listed at eight pounds.
"I have talked to him. … A little boy, Stephen. That's named after Joe's dad I would assume," said Harbaugh, who exchanged text messages with the quarterback after the baby was born.
Flacco also was absent Wednesday because he rushed to the hospital after Dana went into labor.
Minicamp roll call
Free safety Ed Reed skipped the entire three-day camp and is subject to up to $72,000 in fines for not attending. The 34-year-old Pro Bowl safety was the lone unexcused absence this week.
Excused from Thursday's practice were McKinnie (conditioning), center Matt Birk (leg surgery), and defensive end Pernell McPhee (injury). Running back Ray Rice did not attend.
Also present at the facility but not fully participating for health-related reasons were running back Bernard Pierce, wide receivers David Reed and Tandon Doss, cornerback Cary Williams, offensive linemen Kelechi Osemele and Howard Barbieri, and outside linebacker Terrell Suggs.
Running back Anthony Allen, who spent the majority of these spring workouts with the first unit, said Rice has stayed in touch with him throughout the spring. … With Flacco getting his first taste of fatherhood, second-year quarterback Tyrod Taylor again ran the first-team offense. … Webb and linebackers Brendon Ayanbadejo and Nigel Carr each returned an interception for a touchdown during 11-on-11 drills. … During those drills, rookie wide receiver Deonte Thompson stopped in his tracks to catch a pass that was thrown behind him, and veteran safety Bernard Pollard made a point of letting him and everyone else within a three-mile radius know that he would get hit hard if he did it in a game.
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