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Ravens: Jimmy Smith bounces back with 'very strong game'

OWINGS MILLS - Similar to during the preseason, Ravens cornerback Jimmy Smith bounced back from a shaky performance with one that impressed John Harbaugh and Baltimore's coaching staff.
Smith was one of several members of the Ravens' secondary to struggle during Baltimore's opening game against the Denver Broncos last week.
He was twice juked in the open field allowing Broncos ball-carriers to pick up first downs. And according to Pro Football Focus, Denver quarterback Peyton Manning completed six of the 10 passes he threw with Smith in coverage.
Three of the completions went for gains of 27 yards or longer, including Manning's 28-yard touchdown pass to reserve wide receiver Andre Caldwell, who beat Smith off the line to free himself for the touchdown catch.
But Smith was much better against the Cleveland Browns Sunday.
Smith, who started opposite Lardarius Webb, allowed just four passes to be completed in his direction Sunday, according to Pro Football Focus, and those four completions produced just 33 yards.
With Smith in coverage, Browns quarterback Brandon Weeden completed just two of the six passes he threw to Cleveland's top wide receiver, Greg Little.
Smith deflected away three of those six attempts to Little, including two during the fourth quarter, helping Baltimore hold on for a narrow 14-6 win.
"Jimmy Smith had a very strong game," Harbaugh said. "He made two plays back to back there at the end where he got PBUs [pass breakups] and was pretty much one-on-one there against good receivers with good throws that he got the ball out, which was just so big for us in getting that last stop."
Smith did struggle against Denver last week, and he admittedly had issues during the second preseason game against the Atlanta Falcons, but coaches, including Harbaugh, have consistently praised Smith since the spring, and Sunday appeared to be another positive step for the former first-round pick as he looks to finally fulfill expectations in his third NFL season.

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