Late For Work 8/12: Bills Ready To Trade Evans

Plus Torrey Smith stays up watching film, and touchbacks galore around NFL.

Posted by Ryan Mink on Friday, August 12th, 2011 at 9:03 am | Categories: Late For Work, Ryan Mink

Bills Ready To Trade Evans

News broke during Thursday night’s Ravens preseason opener that the Buffalo Bills are open to trading wide receiver Lee Evans, a source told ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

It immediately blew up in Ravenstown, especially with fans worried that current No. 2 option Torrey Smith didn’t record a reception in his first game.

The Arizona Cardinals and Ravens have been tied to the wideout in online chatter. But the only reason the Ravens are in that talk is because Head Coach John Harbaugh said the team would be open to bringing in a veteran wideout.

That’s all. There’s been no talk in Owings Mills, at least openly to the media, about Evans.

In a Wednesday blog, The Baltimore Sun’s Jamison Hensley wrote, “The Ravens, though, probably would only take a look at Evans if he were released.”

That somehow turned into news last night saying the Ravens “have reportedly expressed interest.

But according to Hensley, that’s not true. Hensley clarified his opinion on the matter, which may have started the whole Evans-to-Baltimore chatter.

“That was my opinion. That was not attributed to a source,” he said. “In fact, a source close to the Ravens told me that it was too early to gauge the chances of the team trading for Evans and there was “no way to speculate on it” at this point. That led me to put my take on the situation.”

Evans, 30, could be an intriguing target, IF the Ravens are interested. He made a career-low 37 receptions for 578 yards last year, but still averaged 15.6 yards per catch, showing his vertical presence.

The 5-foot-10 wideout had his best day at M&T Bank Stadium in Week 7 last year, recording six catches for 105 yards and three touchdowns.

However, so far this preseason, the Ravens have shown they’re ready to move on with rookie wideouts Torrey Smith and Tandon Doss.

T. Smith Watches Film, Fires Back

Want to know what rookie wide receiver Torrey Smith did on the train ride back from Philadelphia to Baltimore? He wasn’t sleeping (like I debated doing).

Smith, who was held without a catch and targeted three times, was watching film – probably on one of the team-supplied iPads.

“Just watched film and I’m not disappointed at all just mad at that one play,” Smith tweeted at 1:05 a.m. Friday. “Can’t wait to improve and make plays when my number is called.”

The play Smith is referring to was the interception over the middle. Smith was slowed down by traffic over the deep middle. Tyrod Taylor’s pass assumed Smith would get through it, but instead was intercepted.

Smith took blame for the pick, again showing his maturity.

“I enjoyed my first game…learned a lot and did ok,” he tweeted. “Just wish I could take back one play…Tyrod’s int was a great throw I can’t slip.”

He also had this message for his naysayers: “#shoutouts to the folks who think I will be a bust…y’all are in for a rude awakening

Other Player Twitter Reaction

With the explosion of Twitter, it’s interesting to see what players have to say about the game in their own voice.

Here’s a few from last night:

Touchbacks Galore In First Preseason Game

The new rules regarding kickoffs will drastically affect that aspect of the game, at least if the first night of preseason games is any indicator.

With the kickoff line of scrimmage moving from the 30 to the 35-yard line (all in the name of player safety) the Ravens and Eagles notched six touchbacks. Billy Cundiff booted all three of his into the end zone, resulting in kneel-downs, and there was only one return, made by Baltimore’s Tandon Doss.

It wasn’t just the Ravens game either. In the first play of the Cardinals-Raiders game, kicker Sebastian Janikkowski boomed it out of the back of the end zone (and possibly through the uprights). There wasn’t even an opportunity for a return.

This new kickoff rule sure takes the fun out of kickoff returns, doesn’t it?” The Sun’s Matt Vensel wrote. “It was one of the most exciting plays in football when players such as Devin Hester returned kicks. Now it’s a good time for a beer run or a quick trip to the bathroom.”

Quick Hits

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