After all the mini-camps, practices, meetings and workouts in the familiar confines of the Under Armour Performance Center, the time has just about arrived for the Ravens to head to New Orleans for one last week of Super Bowl prep.
Baltimore leaves for Louisiana on Monday following what coach John Harbaugh called a great week of practice.
“You have to practice well to play well, and you pretty much play the way you practice,” Harbaugh told reporters. “That is something that we’ve learned since we were kids, and that is not going to change. So we need to build on these practices, and we need to improve every single day.”
And now it’s time for things to change a bit.
It will be anything but a normal week for the Ravens, who have to balance media obligations with game prep, and all the hype and trimmings leading up to the biggest contest of the season.
“We’re going to try to maintain as much of the routine as we possibly can, and the differences will be understood,” Harbaugh told reporters. “The differences will be a media session in the middle of the morning on Wednesday and Thursday. We’ll have to break away from our normal routine and go to the media session. We’ll come back after lunch and pick up our routine again, so we’ll push the day back a little bit later. Other than that, it will be the exact same routine that we always use.”
As the Ravens get ready to head south, Harbaugh acknowledged that the focus isn’t just on soaking in the atmosphere surrounding the Super Bowl, but to win it.
“Our guys, that’s all we’re are thinking about right now,” Harbaugh told reporters. “There is an old saying ... ‘The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing.’ That is good wisdom right there. And our guys have done that. Our guys are football players. Our guys love ball. Our guys are into that part of it.
“I saw a quote that (49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh) had, in terms of enjoying this moment, but enjoying the most important part of this moment, which is the football. That is the best part of it. We can do the other stuff anytime, but it is not very often that you get an opportunity to prepare for the Super Bowl, and that is what our guys are enjoying.”