An early setback for Ravens’ Harewood

By Ken Murray
Updated: May 9, 2010

Ramon Harewood

Ramon Harewood

OWINGS MILLS, Md. — Rookie offensive tackle Ramon Harewood, the first NFL player from Barbados, had to be carted off the practice field during Saturday morning’s practice with a knee injury.

When he surfaced in the locker room later, he said had suffered no ligament damage to his right knee, only soft tissue damage that will keep him sidelined for three to four weeks.

“It could’ve been a lot worse,” he said.

A sixth-round draft pick, Harewood went to Morehouse on an academic scholarship. He is viewed by the Ravens as a developmental, but very promising, tackle.

“I’m used to dominating, so [Friday’s first day of minicamp] was an eye opener,” Harewood said. “Some veteran players said to go back to baby steps. I actually thought I was having a good practice mentally and physically [before the injury].”

Although he wasn’t certain how it happened, Harewood believes he was accidentally tripped from behind and then went down with a defensive player with whom he was engaged. His right knee twisted inward, and he was down on the field for an extended time before going off on the cart.

Harewood’s injury means the Ravens effectively lost two right tackles on Saturday. Jared Gaither reportedly has an injury that kept him off the practice field one day after he was moved from left tackle to the right side.

That mean Oniel Cousins got a lot more work with the first unit at right tackle. The third-year veteran said he has gotten stronger since last year, when he started three games for the Ravens, and is concentrating on improving his technique.

Two tackles down, he understands he’s got a bigger role to play. If Gaither is traded, his increased role would become permanent.

“I prepare myself as if I’m a starter,” Cousins said. “I love Gaither and I love Mike [Oher], and all three of us work to get better.

Whatever happens, happens.”