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Appalachian State cornerback Joel Ross invited to Ravens' local prospect day today, sources say

Appalachian State cornerback Joel Ross has been invited to the Ravens' local prospect day today at team headquarters, according to sources.

The Damascus graduate ran the 40-yard dash in 4.43 seconds at his campus Pro Day workout, also bench pressing 225 pounds 17 times with a 32.5-inch vertical leap and a 9-9 broad jump. He had a 4.17 20-yard shuttle and a 6.97 three-cone drill.

Ross had 39 tackles, three interceptions and one sack last season.

A three-year starter, Ross had 56 tackles as a junior with a forced fumble and a blocked extra point. As a sophomore, Ross had 46 tackles, six for losses, five quarterback hurries and returned an interception for a touchdown.

Ross played wide receiver and defensive back at Damascus, catching 21 passes for 330 yards and four touchdowns as a senior.

He played in the 2010 Maryland Crab Bowl all-star game.



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Kentucky outside linebacker TraVaughn Paschal invited to Ravens' local prospect day today

Kentucky outside linebacker TraVaughn Paschal recently learned that his petition for another year of eligibility was denied by the NCAA under the delayed enrollment rule.

Now, the Arundel graduate is pursuing an NFL career after exhausting his eligibility for the Wildcats and has been invited to the Ravens' local prospect day today. Paschal attended Fork Union Military Academy in 2009 and 2010 after going to Arundel and before enrolling at Kentucky.

"I just got the news that the NCAA isn't approving another year for me, so I just recently declared for the draft," Paschal told The Baltimore Sun. "That's why I don't have an agent."

The 6-foot-2, 260-pound Odenton native plans to perform defensive end and outside linebacker drills today.

"I'm very excited to work out for the Ravens," Paschal said. "It's always been a dream, growing up a fan of the local teams. It's just a dream of mine to play close to home."

Paschal tore his abdomen and had ankle surgery during his time at Kentucky, but...

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NFL draft position-by-position breakdown: Quarterbacks

The Ravens’ insistence on taking the best player rather than targeting their biggest need adds to the shroud of mystery that annually surrounds the organization heading into the NFL draft.

While draft pundits have been consistent in projecting the Ravens to use their 26th overall pick on either a wide receiver or a cornerback, general manager Ozzie Newsome has shown that he’s not afraid to do the unexpected.

It would be foolish to dismiss the possibility that Newsome will use the pick to further bolster a position of perceived strength or even trade it to add to the team’s middle-round draft haul.

From now until April 30, the first round of the 2014 NFL draft, The Baltimore Sun will examine the Ravens’ depth at each position, the potential of them adding to that spot early in the draft and some of the players who they could target.

The Ravens will enter the three-day draft with 10 picks: one in each of the first, second, third and sixth rounds, and three each in the fourth and fifth rounds....

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Dennis Pitta participating in Ravens' voluntary conditioning program

Tight end Dennis Pitta is participating in the Ravens' voluntary conditioning program, which started Monday.

Pitta was shown in a video on the Ravens' official website. His career remains in doubt after he dislocated and fractured his right hip twice in the past two seasons.

The Ravens have said they are holding out hope that Pitta fully recovers and is able to play this season, but emphasized they probably won't know if he'll be able to play again until the summer.

Pitta is guaranteed $4 million under his five-year, $32 million contract regardless of whether he plays again.

Pitta injured his hip last September against the Cleveland Browns, underwent surgery and was placed on injured reserve.

Among the other players attending the workouts: quarterback Joe Flacco, running back Justin Forsett, cornerback Jimmy Smith, inside linebacker C.J. Mosley, offensive tackle Rick Wagner, outside linebacker Courtney Upshaw, wide receivers Marlon Brown and Kamar Aiken, nose tackle Brandon Williams, fullback...

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Ravens players Tramain Jacobs, Kamar Aiken sign exclusive-rights tenders

Ravens cornerback Tramain Jacobs and wide receiver Kamar Aiken both signed their exclusive-rights free agent tenders.

Jacobs' tender is $510,000, Aiken's tender is $585,000.

Aiken caught 24 passes for 267 yards and three touchdowns last season as he played in every game. He had previous stints with the Chicago Bears, Buffalo Bills and New England Patriots.

Jacobs played in three games last season after being promoted from the practice squad.

Jacobs chose the Ravens after considering the Denver Broncos, Cleveland Browns and the New Orleans Saints.

Jacobs recorded 55 tackles, 13 pass deflections and two interceptions during two seasons at Texas A&M after the Louisiana native transferred from Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College.



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Ravens WR Kamar Aiken upbeat about role next season as conditioning program begins

Kamar Aiken gradually earned the trust of Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco as a downfield target last season, being counted on more frequently as their chemistry improved.

By the end of the year Flacco and Aiken were clicking; the wide receiver and special teams standout finished the season with a career-high 24 receptions for 267 yards and three touchdowns.

"I think he was able to gain more confidence in me," Aiken told The Baltimore Sun. "Of course, I always had confidence in him. For quarterbacks, it takes a while to get used to how you run and your personality with the routes.

"As the season went on, we got more comfortable with each other and what he expects from me as far as how to run certain routes. We got more in sync with each other."

Aiken has set his ambitions on increasing his role for next season. Reporting Monday to the Ravens' training complex for the start of a voluntary offseason conditioning program and to sign his $585,000 exclusive-rights tender, Aiken is upbeat about...

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