Yesterday the Baltimore Ravens finally returned to doing what they do best, football. Baltimore returned to the practice field Wednesday on Tulane University's baseball complex that has been made into an 80 yard make shift practice field for the Ravens.
Although New Orleans experienced upwards of 24 MPH winds yesterday, the Ravens and head coach John Harbaugh chose to practice in the mid-afternoon outdoors, rather than practicing in the early evening at the New Orleans Saints' indoor practice facility once the San Francisco 49'ers were finished. Harbaugh stated that they preferred to stay on schedule for practice in the mid-afternoon, rather than practicing in the evening. John, when asked about his players and practice, stated:
"We had a great practice, we didn't like the wind, but we got all of our work done. Spirits are high. They looked great. Our players are upbeat and happy. They don't complain about anything"
Last Friday, Baltimore's last "official" practice before heading to New Orleans, both LB Dannell Ellerbe (ankle) and TE Dennis Pitta (thigh) did not participate due to some nagging injuries, and although their availability for the Super Bowl was never really in question, both were full participants Wednesday and looked good. Both Ellerbe and Pitta replied in basically the same way when they were asked about their availability for Super Bowl XLVII, as both said they are definitely playing in this game.
Ellerbe being fully healthy is a huge plus for this defense as they prepare to try and contain the read option and 49'ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick as Ellerbe's speed will be a big factor in this game. Baltimore's offense will also highly benefit from a full and completely healthy Pitta with his ability to both go over the middle and make the big play in the red zone.
It can't be stated enough that Baltimore is coming into the Super Bowl as healthy as they have been all year and their health has been a huge factor in their playoff run. Other than Lardarius Webb, the Ravens have all of their weapons available and will undoubtedly not be afraid to use them all as they attempt to bring home the franchise's second Lombardi Trophy.
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