There's no morning practice out in Westminster today, which allowed me the luxury of sleeping past 7 a.m.
If you know me, you know that's a luxury that I will not pass up.
Saturday's practice gave a number of players their first opportunity to play at M&T Bank Stadium in a Ravens jersey.
Two of those players in particular made a great first impression on the 17,851 fans in attendance - kicker Shayne Graham and safety Ken Hamlin.
Graham has kicked at M&T a number of times in the past as a member of the Bengals, and apparently he likes the setup. The 10-year veteran is 15-of-18 in his career at The Bank, and he had the game of his life in Baltimore, connecting on all seven field goal attempts (including the game-winner) against the Ravens in 2007.
"I remember every kick I've had in my career and I remember every one of those field goals," Graham said. "Really, you don't ever really think back to one of those kicks. You normally try to keep it a fresh kick coming up. So, you use those to build confidence, but you never take any kick for granted because you've made them in the past."
Graham continued that run of success at M&T yesterday, going a perfect 9-for-9 on field goal tries. He connected from up to 53 yards and bested fellow kicker Billy Cundiff, who missed two of his nine attempts (from 33 and 44 yards).
"You can kick in practice, do all the reps you want, but having the adrenaline, having the same target points that you're going to have in a game, it's a nice feeling to have," Graham said. "Anytime I put my shoes on and go out on the field I'm competing with myself and trying to perform for myself. I'm happy when I walk off the field with no misses."
While Graham was busy putting together one of his best practices of camp, Hamlin was accomplishing the same feat.
The former Seahawks and Cowboys safety had his best showing thus far in a Ravens jersey, grabbing two interceptions on the afternoon, including one that he took back for a touchdown.
Hamlin, who has been getting reps behind Tom Zbikowski with the second-team defense, is still trying to get acclimated to the Ravens' defensive system. He says he's starting to feel more comfortable, and that comfort level certainly showed yesterday.
"Every day I try to get better," Hamlin said. "Every day I think I'm getting a little bit better with all the calls, trying to just get it out as quick as possible so everyone's on the same page. It's working out pretty good, but I've still got some more camp to go.
"I'm not worried about positioning myself. I think that today a lot of people got better. That's the thing about practice - we use it to get better each day. Our goal is to make sure we're all gelling on one accord when the season starts."