Williams takes spotlight, now needs to keep it

Williams takes spotlight, now needs to keep it
August 9, 2013, 7:00 am
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LaQuan Williams knows he needs more than one big night

EARLY BIRD: Waking up with the Ravens, the morning after they handled the Buccaneers, 44-16, to start the preseason.

Two-minute topic: How much did University of Maryland product LaQuan Williams help himself Thursday night with his outstanding performance?

Answer: Plenty. Williams was the star of the game, catching a 21-yard touchdown pass, recovering a blocked punt for a TD, and recovering a muffed punt.

At the very least, Williams took a step toward making the 53-man roster, standing out in a crowded picture at wide receiver. After Torrey Smith and Jacoby Jones, the unit is an unknown commodity. A host of receivers are competing for roles, including Williams, Deonte Thompson, Tandon Doss, and David Reed.

During the preseason, the Ravens are looking for those that shine brightest when the lights come on. That’s what Williams did, with two catches for 32 yards, along with his two recoveries on special teams.

“LaQuan played really well,” said Ravens coach John Harbaugh. “It was good to see him step up and make plays. The guy brings his lunch pail every single day. He’s got tremendous talent. He flashes a lot. (If he can) make plays consistently, stack plays, then he’s right there.”

On his touchdown catch, Williams ran a corner pattern, outleaped a Buccaneers’ defender, and came down with the football. It was a contested catch, and Williams won the battle. 

“Tyrod gave me a chance to go up and make a play,” Williams said modestly.

“LaQuan made a heck of a catch, “ Taylor said.

It was the kind of night where the football kept finding Williams. Brynden Trawick blocked the punt in the second quarter that allowed Williams to make the recovery in the end zone. On the muffed punt earlier in the second quarter, Williams reacted quickly and made the recovery before anyone else.

“The ball was just on the ground,” Williams said. “I just happened to be close to it. I just tried to get on it, make sure nobody got it away from me.”

Now the question is this. Can Williams show consistency? It’s his third year with the Ravens. If he is going to do it, now is the time.

“I just want to keep stacking days,” Williams said.

More days like the one he just had.

Hitting the Links

Instant Analysis: Ravens sink Bucs, 44-16

Ravens 2nd WR position remains open after win on Thursday night

Kicker Justin Tucker perfect in preseason opener

Photo Gallery: Scenes from Thursday night's win

Two other AFC North teams played last night. How did they do?