WESTFIELD, IND. —
The Ravens have faced Bears, Rams and solar radiation that can leave the fairer-skinned in Owings Mills burnt to a crisp. But not until Friday this preseason had the team been rained on.
At least not like this.
About 70 minutes into the team’s joint practice with the host Indianapolis Colts, the clouds overhead finally could take it no longer. Steady rainfall soaked the Grand Park Events Center’s fields for about 25 minutes, briefly scuttling seven-on-seven and 11-on-11 action between the teams.
The Ravens have trained during bad weather at the Under Armour Performance Center, but not necessarily in bad weather. When storms have threatened practice, they’ve moved inside to their indoor facility.
Friday’s precipitation, then, was unwelcome to most everyone in attendance but coach John Harbaugh.
“The rain came down pretty hard at the end, which is good for you,” he said. “The heavy stuff's not coming down for quite a while. But it was good for ball-handling. We got a couple balls knocked out there at the end, so for our guys to have that emphasis was good.”
The rain even inspired a quote from, appropriately enough, a legend who’d made his mark on the water.
“If you're going to fight in the North Atlantic, you have to practice in the North Atlantic,” he said, paraphrasing Adm. William F. "Bull" Halsey Jr., the U.S. naval commander who presided over much of the country’s success in the Pacific theater during World War II. “This is a good thing for us to have. We really haven't had a rain day yet. … So to get this kind of a day is good for us.”