Harbaugh thinks Ravens are covered at free safety

Harbaugh thinks Ravens are covered at free safety
August 13, 2014, 8:00 am
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St. Louis Rams strong safety Darian Stewart (20) on the sideline against the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium.

(Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports)

Others may see the Ravens free safety spot as a question mark, but not coach John Harbaugh.

Darian Stewart is the starting free safety on the depth chart, and he has been working with the starters since training camp opened. However, Stewart started just six games for the Rams last season, and hamstring injuries have been an issue for him in previous years. Meanwhile, recently acquired Will Hill may be the most talented free safety on the Ravens roster. But Hill will begin the regular season serving a six-game suspension for violating the NFL’s drug policy.

With Matt Elam playing primarily at strong safety this season, can Stewart stay healthy and handle the starting job at free safety? If not, could Jeromy Miles or Terrence Brooks successfully take over as the starter?

No matter how it plays out, Harbaugh does not sound worried about his secondary.

“Jeromy Miles played very well; Brynden Trawick (has) really done well,” Harbaugh said following Monday’s practice. “Terrence Brooks is coming on; Anthony Levine is swinging corner and safety doing a real good job. Omar Brown makes plays out here again today. He’s a ball hawk. So we’re pretty deep at safety. We’re happy with that group.”

When Brooks was drafted in the third round, it was thought he might have a chance to start Week 1. Instead, Brooks has worked primarily with the third stringers, but Harbaugh said Brooks was making progress and would contribute as a rookie.

“He’s learning fast,” Harbaugh said. “Safeties have a long way to go as rookies, but he’s doing a great job. He’s going to play a lot this year, no doubt.”

Harbaugh believes the Ravens are covered at free safety. But while Stewart looks like the likely starter Week 1, it will be interesting to see how things develop as the season progresses.

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