Defensive tackle Haloti Ngata was out on the field Saturday night as the Ravens held an open practice for fans at M&T Bank Stadium, but he was in a jersey and shorts and didn’t participate in team drills. That will happen for the first time this summer on Monday, and Ngata can’t wait.
“I’m getting excited just to practice with the guys,” said Ngata, who pulled his hamstring on July 26 while running his conditioning test, an injury that sidelined him for the start of training camp.
After Ngata was activated from the physical unable to perform list Friday, Ravens head coach John Harbaugh said Ngata would be eased back in to practice this weekend and that he would get the green light to fully participate Monday. It appears nothing has altered that plan.
“He didn’t have the pads on, so he couldn’t fully participate in this practice,” Harbaugh said. “He’ll be in Monday’s practice to whatever extent the hamstring will allow. But he’s pretty close.”
Ngata’s weight has been scrutinized after he showed up at June’s mandatory minicamp heavier than he had been last season and then failed his first conditioning test due to the hamstring pull.
On Saturday, Ngata said he weighs 345 pounds and he plans to stay at that weight for now.
“I feel pretty good. Right now, I can feel the power,” said Ngata, who has admitted playing at a lighter weight wore him down late last season. “We’ll just see how it goes as the season goes on. If I feel like I need to lose the weight, then I’ll probably try to lose the weight during the season.”
Ngata, a three-time Pro Bowl defender, said he has a stiff back and neck, too, after sleeping at the hospital two nights last week as his wife gave birth to their second son, Haloti Maximus, who tipped the scales at more than 10 pounds.
“He was just huge,” Ngata said with wide eyes when asked about the origin of his son’s middle name.