Ravens Camp Report: Monday Observations

WESTMINSTER -- Several Baltimore Ravens returned to practice Monday, including: cornerback Gary Baxter (hernia), wide receiver Devard Darling (quadriceps), linebacker Ed Hartwell (quadriceps), linebacker Bart Scott (knee), cornerback Fred Weary (quadriceps) and safety Marcell Allmond (leg).<br><br>

It was Baxter's first work in team drills since the first day of training camp. He said he has torn through most of the scar tissue from his surgery. Linebacker Adalius Thomas missed the afternoon workout with a minor, undisclosed injury.

Receiver Travis Taylor injured his groin, but expects to practice today.

Tight end Todd Heap (knee contusion), linebacker Peter Boulware (knee), quarterback Anthony Wright (shoulder), running back B.J. Sams (thumb), cornerback Zach Norton (shoulder) and tight end Trent Smith (leg) didn't practice.

Defensive tackle Matt Zielinski (knee) is out for the year and will undergo surgery.

EXCUSED ABSENCES: Offensive tackle Orlando Brown missed practice for family-related personal reasons, and the team anticipates he'll be back today.

Senior consultant Jim Fassell is returning to town today after attending the Hall of Fame induction ceremony for quarterback John Elway this weekend in Canton, Ohio. During his speech, Elway noted that Fassell, who recruited and coached him at Stanford and with the Denver Broncos, was a significant contributor to his success.

VISITING DIGNITARY: Maryland Gov. Robert Ehrlich, a former captain of the Princeton football team, attended the Ravens' morning practice and taped a public-service announcement along with Pro Bowl safety Ed Reed. It was for the Ravens' Honor Rows program, a program that rewards volunteerism.

"Coach [Billick] called me and asked me to get in the weight room a little bit," Ehrlich quipped. "I might run a 40-yard dash later. There's not a big demand for a 4.85 in the NFL these days at the linebacker position, but I'm thinking Stan White didn't run much faster.

"You really can't quantify how much we lost without a professional football team all those years. How can you value taking your 5-year old out here and watching practice, getting autographs and meeting the players?"

UNDAUNTED: Outside linebacker Adalius Thomas, whose tackle broke Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick's fibula last August, said he was surprised when he learned an injury occurred on the play.

"I was also surprised he didn't slide," Thomas said. "He came in head-first."

NEW SCREENING PROCEDURE: The Ravens will initiate a new screening procedure. at Thursday's preseason opener against the Falcons at M&T Bank Stadium.

All guests, Ravens, stadium employees and media will be subject to a modified "pat down" procedure when entering the stadium this season.

The policies were instituted in response to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's raised threat levels over the past year. The Ravens sent letters to each season-ticket holder detailing the procedures and encouraged fans to arrive earlier to allow time to enter the stadium gates.

"Clearly, pat downs will take us longer to get everyone in the stadium, but we believe we'll accomplish these screenings efficiently and with some speed," said Ravens senior director of operations Roy Sommerhof.

These are the items fans are allowed to bring into the stadium: binoculars, cameras and video cameras without the cases, small purses, diaper bags (with child), blankets and tarps, flags and banners, coats, medical supplies.

Banned items include: backpacks or tote bags, coolers (hard or soft), large purses or fanny packs, bottles, cans, containers or thermoses, air horns, whistles, laser pointers, umbrellas, flag/banner poles or dangerous objects, weapons (including knives on belts), animals with the exception of service dogs.

Aaron Wilson writes for the Carroll County Times.

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