Adrian Hamilton 'did a nice job on special teams,' Harbaugh says

Sprinting down the field to cover a kickoff on Sunday, Ravens rookie outside linebacker Adrian Hamilton ran past blockers before tossing New York Giants running back David Wilson to the ground.

It was the first tackle of his NFL career.

Hamilton was cut by the Dallas Cowboys last summer partially due to his lack of special teams background and expertise.

"He did a nice job on special teams," Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. "He covered kicks well. He was on the punt return team, and, obviously, that's a role that we will be working on expanding for him, where he can get to the point where he can play on three and then four phases and also his defensive role. He's still learning the defense, but we would like to get him out there and see how he does on that, too."

Hamilton was promoted to the active roster last Saturday when inside linebacker Jameel McClain was placed on injured reserve with a spinal cord contusion.

Hamilton was signed to the Ravens' practice squad after being cut by the Cowboys during the final major roster cutdown prior to the regular season.

Despite a solid preseason in which he notably knocked St. Louis Rams quarterback Kellen Clemens out of a game with a concussion-causing hit, Hamilton didn't stick with the Cowboys. He battled knee and wrist injuries during training camp and fell victim to a numbers game in Dallas.
 
Playing at Prairie View A&A, Hamilton broke Indianapolis Colts Pro Bowl defensive end Robert Mathis' Southwestern Athletic Conference single-season record with 20 1/2 sacks last season.

Despite recording 81 tackles, six forced fumbles, being named a Football Championship Subdivision All-American, Hamilton went undrafted.

The Ravens see untapped ability in Hamilton.

"That's why he's here," Harbaugh said. "He's got pass rush potentail. He had a bunch of sacks in college, and he's shown that in practice. The way it works basically with these guys, as you know, you develop them all year.

"Every single practice is an opportunity to develop players, and he's been working really hard, and we hope he's ready. That's the plane. We try to bring him along when opportunity presents itself with a guy being prepared and ready to contribute."
 
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