Every day in camp the Baltimore Ravens defense has been wearing their oven mitts, and taking out fresh turnovers.
No, Lardarius Webb and Tavon Young are not training with actual oven mitts, but they have been intercepting passes from Joe Flacco and Ryan Mallett. Each day these Ravens are producing turnovers that weren’t working last season. The Baltimore Ravens scrounged up a league-low six interceptions last year; through camp already, they’ve surpassed that number.
There is an emphasis on takeaways according to new defensive backs coach Leslie Frazier. Since OTA’s Harbaugh has stressed the importance.
“We’ve had a drill just about every day, emphasizing taking the ball away,” Leslie said. “Whether it’s stripping the football, punching it out, getting interceptions and so that’s what you do. You teach what you emphasize.”
The Ravens are no doubt training to cause turnovers. So far I’ve counted over ten interceptions from the linebackers and secondary. Three tip-drill interceptions occured today, and last season not a single interception was a tip-drill pick. Harbaugh gave his thoughts about the plays.
“Yeah, I’m really happy about it,” Harbaugh said through a smile. “I do think it’s an emphasis. We are working on it, and tracking the ball, getting our hands on balls.”
He later added he’s excited seeing the tip passes get caught, rather than fall harmlessly to the turf like last season.