Thursday, September 05, 2019

A healthy Marshal Yanda provides calming influence, leadership Ravens need

OWINGS MILLS, Md. — Coach John Harbaugh declined to name a left guard on Monday’s press conference. The official depth chart has three potential options for the starter at that position come Sunday’s season opener. 
As for right guard, there’s no debate needed. 
For the first time in the 2019 season, Marshal Yanda will hit the field ready to play. After dealing with a foot/ankle injury in training camp, and sitting out the entire preseason as a result, the 35-year old guard is set to pick up where he left off. 
“I’m excited to get to play this game for another year,” Yanda said. “You just take it one year at a time. I’m feeling healthy, I didn’t have any offseason surgeries, I’m excited about it for sure.”
Coach John Harbaugh said he’s one of the few, if any, players that could afford to miss the preseason as a whole. 
His return to the offensive line bolsters the unit, but also provides an element of leadership that is hard to replicate.
“Obviously as a player, he’s awesome,” center Matt Skura said. “Literally one of the best guards in the NFL, and to ever play. I think a big part of it, too, is his leadership. You’re going to run into adversity in a game. He’s the one that’s like, ‘Alright guys, let’s calm down. Next play, next series.’ I think that’s really big for guys who maybe don’t have as much experience.”
Yanda is entering his 13th season in Baltimore. He’s played in less than 16 games just three times in his career. 
“I love this game, I love the camaraderie of the players and doing something as a team you couldn’t do by yourself. Just competing out there on Sunday, that’s what I live for. That burning desire has not left me yet, so come Sunday, I’m going to be fired up to put those pads on and get after it.”

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