After the Ravens signed Free Agent Safety Marcus Williams and then picked Notre Dame star Kyle Hamilton on the first round of the NFL drawing, there was uncertainty about how the team would use veteran Chuck Clark.
But during Saturday’s rookie minicamp, coach John Harbaugh said Clark is a big part of the team and expressed hope that the 2017 sixth round roster will remain in Baltimore.
“I’m not worried about the other stuff,” Harbaugh said. “I love Chuck Clark and I love the way he plays. I’m really happy he’s a Raven.”
Harbaugh’s comments come a day after Clark posted a cryptic message on Twitter, which read, “This could go one or both ways. It could go up, it could go down. Either way, I’m prepared!!
Clark, who is entering his sixth season with the Ravens, has 283 tackles, five interceptions, four forced fumbles and 28 deflections in 79 games (46 starts). In 2021, he recorded 80 tackles, 12 pass deflections and a pair of picks.
Clark has been very durable throughout his career as he hasn’t missed a defensive strike in the past two seasons. Under contract until 2023, Clark was a leader in the locker room and a valuable communicator on the pitch, with the green dot signaling the defence.
Harbaugh called Clark “one of the best safeties in football” and believes the team is deep in that position group.
“We were deep in safety before, then you add a guy like Kyle and the depth just explodes in your face,” he said. “Mark was clearly an expensive free agent that we were happy with. After that, Tony Jefferson can play football. Geno Stone is a very good young safety. Brandon Stephens, who started with Safety for us last year, also gained cornering flexibility. With all those certainties, [Stephens is] will probably move to the corner a bit. I’m very happy with that group.”
Former Navy LB Diego Fagot joins the practice
Former Navy Inside linebacker Daniel Fagot, veteran defensive tackle Marcell Dareus and former Green Bay Packers wide receiver Geronimo Allen attended practice on Saturday.
Bassoon did not advance after a total of 282 tackles, 35 1/2 tackles for losses, 9 1/2 sacks, two interceptions, two fumbles and five forced fumbles in four years in the Navy.
Dareus, the number three in the 2011 draft by the Buffalo Bills, has not played in the NFL since 2019. The 32-year-old played in 121 games in 10 seasons, making 107 starts. His best season came in 2014, when he recorded 10 sacks and was named first-team All-Pro.
In addition to trying Allen out, the Ravens signed six recipients as unwritten free agents. Five stand at least six feet tall, which Harbaugh says “was no coincidence.”
“We were looking for the bigger guys, and guys wanted to come here,” Harbaugh said. “I think we have a great crop of free-agent wide receivers because they saw the opportunity.”
>> Ravens rookie offensive tackle Daniel Faalele said 375 pounds is his target weight. The former Minnesota star, who currently weighs 6-8, 380 pounds, said slimming down would allow him to “play at my best for longer.”
>> Faalele joked that he’s gotten used to not hating first-round pick and former Iowa center Tyler Linderbaum, as he called the two rivals since they competed in the Big Ten Conference. “I hated him for four years, but now that we’re on the same team, he’s a pretty cool guy,” said Faalele.
>> Hamilton said Ravens outside linebacker and former Notre Dame teammate Daelin Hayes congratulated him after being called up, saying “let’s go win a Super Bowl.” Hamilton did not name the other players who contacted him, but did mention a player who messaged him on Instagram saying “dinner is yours.”