At first glance, Chris Wormley’s four tackles in four games — including two starts — might not seem that impressive. But the Ravens nose tackle has also batted three passes, which leads the defensive line and is tied for third on the team.
Wormley is still seeking the first sack of his career and is backing up Michael Pierce on the depth chart, but the former Michigan standout said he is comfortable with his responsibilities.
“I think I’m realizing my role a lot more,” he said. “I know what the coaches expect, I know the defense, I know what the guys in the locker room expect out of me, I understand the scheme of the defense more, I’m bigger, faster, stronger. So when you put that all together, it just makes for a better player.”
Originally selected with the organization’s first of two third-round selections in the 2017 NFL draft as a defensive end, Wormley has transitioned to the interior of the defensive line. He started twice as a rookie before giving way to Carl Davis.
John Harbaugh is as eager as Wormley to see him tap into his potential, and the Ravens coach recently expressed his faith in the 24-year-old.
“He always had it in him, and he’s still just scratching the surface of his potential,” Harbaugh said. “He and I talk pretty much every week, and he’s a smart guy, very mature, and he knows exactly what he needs to do from one week to the next to improve. That’s why I think he does it. Tearing off blocks, staying square down the line and falling back on zone plays, not getting pushed around in gap schemes — those are all things that he’s done a really good job of, and then vertical pressure in the pass rush. He’s gotten in quarterbacks’ faces quite a few times. Yet he still knows he can get a lot better.”
Six return to practice
Six of eight Ravens who sat out Wednesday’s practice returned for Thursday afternoon’s session.
Wide receivers John Brown and Michael Crabtree, cornerback Brandon Carr (knee), defensive back Anthony Levine Sr. (hamstring), free safety Eric Weddle and right guard Marshal Yanda practiced. Brown, Crabtree, Weddle and Yanda missed Wednesday’s session for non-injury-related reasons and fully participated Thursday, as did Carr.
Levine was limited Thursday, as well as defensive tackle Willie Henry (hernia surgery) and a pair of rookies in inside linebacker Chris Board (concussion) and tight end Hayden Hurst (stress fracture in foot) for the second straight day.
Outside linebacker Tim Williams (hamstring) and rookie cornerback Anthony Averett (hamstring) did not practice for the second consecutive day. Running back Alex Collins (knee) and outside linebacker Za’Darius Smith (hamstring) did not participate Thursday after practicing Wednesday.
Three Cleveland Browns starters in wide receivers Jarvis Landry (knee) and rookie Antonio Callaway (knee) and safety Damarious Randall (heel) practiced on a limited basis Thursday after being held out of Wednesday’s session. Two other starters in defensive tackle Trevon Coley (wrist) and defensive end Myles Garrett (wrist) were full participants for the second straight day. … Eight days after earning AFC Special Teams Player of the Week, kicker Justin Tucker was named AFC Special Teams Player of the Month. Tucker won the award for the fifth time in his career by converting nine of his first 10 field-goal tries this season, including six of seven from 40 yards or longer. Tucker, 28, goes into this weekend’s game at Cleveland as the most accurate kicker in NFL history, the only one to make at least 90 percent of his attempts (90.2 percent). “The most important thing is, help us win, and that’s what our field goal team is doing,” special teams coordinator/associate head coach Jerry Rosburg said. “I’m very happy for Justin, too. His talents are pretty well-known by this point, and that recognition is something we value.” … The team announced its signing of rookie wide receiver Andre Levrone. The 23-year-old Laurel native was with the Ravens in training camp. In a corresponding move, the team released rookie defensive end Christian LaCouture.
Baltimore Sun reporter Jonas Shaffer contributed to this article.