Here's a quick look at three guys who made a positive impression last night in the Ravens' 13-6 loss to the Eagles, and three guys who failed to step up to the plate, so to speak.
* Paul Kruger - I feel like this guy needs a nickname, especially if he keeps playing at a high level. "The Kruginator"? Let's work on that. Kruger has impressed his teammates with his effort in training camp, and he carried that performance over into last night's game, posting five tackles and a sack. Sure, there were a couple missed opportunities in the backfield, but Kruger was all over the field, and got his 2011 campaign off to a good start.
* LaQuan Williams - If you're an undrafted free agent trying to earn a roster spot, making three catches for 46 yards in limited playing time isn't a bad way to get noticed. Last night, Williams showed the speed and hands that he's displayed on the practice fields in Owings Mills the last two weeks.
* Dennis Pitta - The only guy to record more receiving yards than Williams last night was Pitta, who started the game with a bang and kept a solid level of play throughout. Pitta's 27-yard acrobatic grab over an Eagles defensive back was probably the offensive play of the game for the Ravens, and it came on the opening snap from scrimmage. With Ed Dickson nursing a hamstring injury, Pitta continues to make strides and build a rapport with Joe Flacco.
(Before you rip me for leaving out safety Bernard Pollard, know that I will have a more in-depth blog about Pollard in the coming hours. His absence from this list is no accident.)
* Oniel Cousins - The fourth-year offensive tackle has been given a chance to take the starting right tackle job and run with it, and he dropped the ball last night. Cousins struggled in pass protection both at the right and left tackle spots, and had particular trouble with spin moves, as he got burned by outside rushers on spins on at least three occasions. Luckily for Cousins, while rookie Jah Reid had solid plays, he also failed to take ownership of the right tackle gig.
* Michael Oher - I hate to pick on the big guys up front, but Oher didn't have his best night last night, either. He was flagged for illegal formation, was beaten around the edge on a handful of plays, and didn't seem to make much improvement from last season, when he often struggled at the left tackle spot. If Oher is unable to lock down that left edge, Flacco could be running for his life this season given the uncertainty on the right side with Cousins and Reid.
* Torrey Smith - 11 Ravens caught passes last night. Smith, the Ravens' second-round pick, was not one of them. The rookie is being handed a large role in the offense early in camp, but the Ravens' current No. 2 receiver didn't look smooth coming out of his breaks, failed to show the speed we've seen him display in camp and in college, he and gave up on a Tyrod Taylor throw early in the second quarter, resulting in an interception. It's only one game, but Smith will need to step up soon, or else GM Ozzie Newsome will need to make a major deal for a proven wideout.