In the aftermath of Matt Birk undergoing arthroscopic surgery on his balky left knee and free agent Casey Rabach failing his physical, the Ravens have turned to a center with a familiar last name.
Bryan Mattison, the son of former defensive coordinator Greg Mattison, has been lining up at center with the first offense. Mattison, a converted defensive tackle from the University of Iowa, said he's slowly developing a groove at his new position.
"I don't know if you're ever comfortable playing center," he said. "If there is a comfort level to playing center, then I've got a long way to go. I've got a lot to learn. But like I said earlier, with our coaches and our guys on the line, hopefully, I can learn it pretty quick."
Playing center is not an entirely unfamiliar assignment for Mattison, who filled that role on the scout team last season."I played it on scout team when I was on the practice squad," he said. "So I was going against [two-time Pro Bowl defensive tackle] Haloti [Ngata] every day and [12-time Pro Bowl inside linebacker] Ray [Lewis] and Sizz [four-time Pro Bowl outside linebacker Terrell Suggs] and Double-J [outside linebacker Jarret Johnson]."
Mattison's brief tenure with the first offense has been decent, but he did incur the wrath of offensive line coach Andy Moeller when a botched exchange with quarterback Joe Flacco led to a fumble on Thursday.
Mattison said he had no objection to the team's decision to move him from guard to center.
"They just tell me where to play, and I play it," he said. "I've got a long way to go to learn center. But I've got great coaches here great players on the team who help me learn. So that makes it a little easier for me."