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Donte’ Stallworth hasn’t played a down of football since December 28, 2008.
You wouldn’t think it by looking at him.
The Ravens’ fresh free agent wide receiver showed up to the Ravens’ training facility for the first day of voluntary workouts looking cut. After serving a one-year suspension from the NFL, Stallworth is doing everything he can to make sure he can get back up to speed.
“Any time you’ve had time off there’s going to be some rust,” Stallworth said. “I’m not expecting to pick up right where I left off. But at the same time, I’m going to do everything in my power to make that rust wear off pretty fast.”
Stallworth said he never stopped working out throughout his suspension. Recently, he has been training five days a week for about three or three-and-a-half hours a day in a gym in Miami.
To keep his football senses sharpe, Stallworth caught passes from quarterbacks Brady Quinn of the Denver Broncos and Drew Stanton of the Lions. Now that he’s in Baltimore, Stallworth has already begun working out with Joe Flacco.
“It was good to get my hands on some balls, you know,” Stallworth said. “The goal is [to contribute] right away. But I still have a lot of building to do. I have to get familiar with the quarterback and the offense.”
Stallworth said the Ravens’ offense is similar to what Cleveland used when he was there in 2008, which should help the wideout’s learning curve. But when it comes to what role he sees himself playing, Stallworth didn’t put much thought into the notion.
He simply said he wanted to help the Ravens get to the next level of winning a championship, especially after tasting the bitterness of a Super Bowl loss while in New England in 2007.
“I just want to come in and help out where I can,” Stallworth said. “Whatever they need me to do.”