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Undrafted but not unnoticed, Ravens' Victor Ochi earning praise with his effort

The first week of training camp has been an eventful one for the Ravens rookies, with first-rounder Ronnie Stanley stepping in at left tackle, second-rounder Kamalei Correa working with the first team and third-rounder Bronson Kaufusi suffering a season-ending ankle injury.

Another rookie who has stood out is undrafted free agent signing Victor Ochi, a 6-foot-1, 242-pound product of Stony Brook.

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The Ravens signed Ochi as a linebacker, but he has been working with the defensive linemen the last few days.

"He's explosive," coach John Harbaugh said. "He's a pass rusher, as advertised. This guy, his motor is running hot every play. He's coming off the ball, he's trying to get to the quarterback and he's chasing the run."

Ochi has made a few plays to prove himself to the coaches. In Monday's open practice at M&T Bank Stadium, he rushed past James Hurst on the outside to get to the quarterback in 11-on-11 action and also fared well in one-on-one drills. He found himself in the middle of post-play scuffles Monday and again Thursday.

"We grade effort, and it's very rare that he doesn't get a plus on his effort," Harbaugh said. "He's a young guy. He has a lot to learn, but [I'm] pretty fairly excited about him. He does have a ways to go. … We have to do some other things in our defense that he has to learn, but I'd say he's right on track."

Harbaugh not concerned with Urschel's other interests: John Urschel's commitment to studying mathematics is well-established by now, after the Ravens' offensive lineman began taking graduate classes at Massachusetts Institute of Technology this past offseason.

But as a professional football player working toward a Ph.D., Urschel still stands out, and his unique blend of interests didn't escape Harbaugh.

"You do wonder. I wouldn't be strictly honest if I say it didn't cross my mind — 'You spend a lot of time on the math, buddy,'" Harbaugh said with a smile. "But with him, you do, you just learn not to concern yourself with that, because he takes care of business, and he's a football player first."

Since he began studying at MIT in the winter, he has taken the summer off to prepare for football and the fall off for the season. He has been a full participant in the team's offseason program.

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As a three-time Academic All-American at Penn State, Urschel became used to balancing school and football, and that effort is useful as he combines intelligence and athleticism on the field.

But of course, in the interest of the Ravens' season, he hopes he doesn't go back to math until February.

"He knows that [football is] his profession at this time in life," Harbaugh said. "He's 100 percent committed to his football, and I'd say he's 100 percent committed to his math. … He commits himself to the things that are all important and does a great job of it, so I have no concerns whatsoever about him not being prepared."

End zone: Former Ravens fullbacks Sam Gash and Vonta Leach attended practice. Gash played for the Ravens from 2000-2002, Leach from 2011-2013. The two each started on one of the Ravens' Super Bowl-winning teams. … A week after signing him, the Denver Broncos waived injured wide receiver Marlon Brown, who is dealing with a back injury.

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