Notebook: Jones on the move

OWINGS MILLS -- The Edgar Jones experiment has been revived as the Baltimore Ravens have switched him from outside linebacker to tight end, a position he hasn't played since high school. The Ravens sorely need depth at tight end due to nagging injuries to starter Todd Heap and backup Daniel Wilcox.

"We want to give it a little more of a full-blown experiment," Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. "We want to give him a week or two in there and see how he does. He's played well at linebacker. We feel like we can move him back there at any time and he'll do just fine for us, but we want to see if he can help us at tight end."

Jones was a two-time all-state selection at defensive end and tight end at Rayville High in Louisiana, and was named all-district four times.

Jones dabbled at tight end during minicamps, but never thought it would be a full-time vocation.

"During the offseason, I took it as a joke and that they were just working me in," Jones said. "I didn't take it too seriously until coach Harbaugh called me into his office. Then, I saw the 46 on my locker, so I knew what was happening."

Jones was a three-time all-state prep basketball player who once scored 59 points in a single game. At Southeast Missouri State, he was a Division I-AA All-American with a dozen sacks as a senior.

"I was more of a receiving tight end," said Jones, who had five tackles and a sack as an undrafted rookie last season. "They threw the ball to me a lot."

At 6-foot-3, 263 pounds, Jones has the size, speed and strength to potentially emerge as a factor as a blocker.

"He's a rangy athlete that can run," Harbaugh said. "From the blocking perspective, we suspect he can do it because he comes off the ball so well on defense, uses his hat and hands and can push a tight end around. We figured we would maybe flip that around and see how it goes."

Because of Jones' versatility, he could allow the Ravens to hold a roster spot for ano ther position since he could possibly be interchangeable.

"The thing about a guy like that, the value you would have is a guy who could play both ways," Harbaugh said. "He could be an emergency linebacker, and then give you a lot of value on special teams as well."

Jones acknowledged that he will keep his head in the defensive playbook just in case this is a temporary move.

He has received a few barbs from defensive players about switching allegiances.

"This is exciting," Jones said. "It's a blessing just to be in the NFL, but going from the defense to the offense is a challenge to me. I'm going to step up to the plate and meet it."

INJURY REPORT: Harbaugh expressed hope that wide receiver Demetrius Williams will play in the season opener even though he remains on the physically unable to perform list with a sore left Achilles' tendon.

"He's expected to play in the opener, but, you know, until we see him out there doing it, we won't know for sure," Harbaugh said.

Meanwhile, defensive end Trevor Pryce and defensive tackle Lorenzo Williams returned to practice. Pryce was absent Tuesday during the portion open to reporters and Williams hadn't practiced20in two days.

Not practicing: cornerback Derrick Martin (right shoulder), Demetrius Williams, offensive tackle Jared Gaither (sprained right ankle), running back Willis McGahee (left knee surgery), defensive tackle Kelly Talavou (dislocated shoulder) and nose guard Kelly Gregg (left knee surgery).

QUICK HITS: Right guard Marshal Yanda spent time practicing his snaps to the quarterbacks. He played some center at minicamps. ... Rookie quarterback Joe Flacco has been bothered by a sore oblique muscle, but continues to practice. Harbaugh noted that Flacco hasn't eased up since it was announced that he's no longer a starting candidate. "I would say that Joe is more determined than ever," he said. "He's nursing a little throwing issue here in his side, and he goes out and throws the extra seven-on-seven, throws extra balls with Demetrius. He just goes harder, and that's what we thought we saw when we drafted him."

Aaron Wilson covers the Baltimore Ravens for the Carroll County Times and the Annapolis Capital.


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