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January 27, 2013

Ravens practice before heading south

OWINGS MILLS, Md. — The music blared in the Baltimore Ravens locker room Saturday as the players threw their football gear into black duffel bags lying in front of their cubicles.

Next stop, New Orleans.

After one final practice at their own training facility, the Super Bowl-bound Ravens will take Sunday off before heading for the Big Easy on Monday afternoon in anticipation of their matchup on Feb. 3 against the San Francisco 49ers.

“We’re right where we want to be,” wide receiver Torrey Smith said. “Now we have an opportunity to play in the big one. But at the end of the day, we’re still getting ready for a football game.”

Coach John Harbaugh conducted practice from Thursday through Saturday as if it was a normal work week. They went hard on Thursday and Friday and eased up Saturday.

“We’ve had a great week. We had an excellent practice,” Harbaugh said after the closed two-hour session. “The guys are very sharp and they’re excited. We’ll have to go down there and do just as well (or) do better.”

The next time the Ravens hit the practice field, it will be in New Orleans. This week, at least, there were no distractions.

“I think it’s always important to have a good practice no matter what,” Harbaugh said. “You’ve got to practice well to play well. You pretty much play the way you practice. That’s something that we learned when we were kids and that’s not going to change.”

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