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Ravens coach John Harbaugh shares insights on team's roster as he awaits return to field

Childs Walker, The Baltimore Sun on

Published in Football

Feeling cooped up and deprived of your favorite routines? If so, you have much in common with Ravens coach John Harbaugh.

On a conference call with season-ticket holders Thursday, Harbaugh said he's going stir crazy, just like so many other people trapped at home by the coronavirus pandemic.

Harbaugh said the Ravens have done their best to "turn over every stone and look hard at every possibility" during the pandemic. But as the team goes through virtual offseason workouts, he's eager for a return to normalcy. "It's not quite the same, for sure, as being back with the guys and back in the building," he said.

Commissioner Roger Goodell said on a conference call Thursday that he hopes to clear coaches to return to team facilities next week. That would be a welcome hint of things to come for Harbaugh.

"I just want to get back on the grass," he said.

Despite the lack of live workouts, Harbaugh offered numerous glimpses of his thinking about the team's 2020 roster.

 

He said first-round pick Patrick Queen will likely operate at the heart of the defense, picking up a legacy forged by Pro Bowl middle linebackers Ray Lewis and C.J. Mosley. "We'll play him probably at MIKE, for the most part, right there in the middle," Harbaugh said. "We'll let him use his speed and his instinct to run around and make plays in all three phases, to be a three-down guy both in our base package and our sub package."

He said third-round pick Malik Harrison will probably play on the weak side in the team's base defense but could also take repetitions at middle linebacker.

"We'll flip those guys around," Harbaugh said. "Really to say they're a specific position is probably not all that accurate. ... We'll just see how much playing time they earn. We expect them to earn a lot of playing time. We're really fired up about those two guys.""

Harbaugh expects greater production from the team's defensive front, which was bolstered by offseason acquisitions Calais Campbell and Derek Wolfe and by draft picks Justin Madubuike and Broderick Washington Jr. He said the Ravens looked for linemen to cut off outside runs, which hurt them last year and will be used heavily by AFC North opponents.

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