Baltimore Ravens linebacker Terrell Suggs (55) reacts after a play during the second half against the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium. The Ravens won 16-13 in overtime. (Photo: Christopher Hanewinckel, USA TODAY Sports)
OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- Baltimore Ravens linebacker Terrell Suggs couldn't tell he was getting ready to play in the Super Bowl in nine days, not from the intensity of coach John Harbaugh's padded Friday practice.
So much for taking it easy on his guys. Obviously, the early-week rest period -- given by Harbaugh to a fatigued roster that has played three intense postseason games, including a double-overtime thriller in high altitude -- is over.
"It hasn't sunk in yet, because we're still taking care of the logistics, especially from the practice we just had. You would never know we're preparing for the Super Bowl," Suggs said afterward. "We thought it was training camp.
"But we're a special group of guys. We've never been immune to working hard around here. We know how to work.''
One of the reasons Harbaugh has the Ravens working so hard is to prepare for San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, a dual threat, who ran for 181 yards in a playoff victory over the Green Bay Packers.
Practice squad quarterback Dennis Dixon, who ran a spread read-option offense at Oregon, and backup Tryod Taylor have been taking turns immitating Kaepernick. While Dixon (6-3, 215) is closer in size to the 6-4, 230 Kaepernick, Taylor has been a little smoother with his read-option fakes.
Has Dixon been doing any of Kaepernick's signature celebratory touchdown biceps kisses?
"They've done it a couple times in practice, him and Tyrod, so they're having fun being him,'' Suggs said. "It's not a very fun offense to play against. But they're enjoying it."
Dixon said defensive coordinator Dean Pees came up to him after practice and complimented him on his convincing Kaepernick impersonations.
"Dean Pees said I'm doing an excellent job and I'm giving the defense confidence they'll be ready going forward,'' Dixon said. "I didn't run the pistol-pistol offense at Oregon, but I know something about it.
"I'm trying to give the defense what they need, because Colin Kaepernick is a great athlete. And trying to match him is going to be hard.
"Kaepernick has relatively long arms like mine and he causes confusion with his read-option fakes. My goal this week is to be aggressive and let the defense know he's a force to be reckoned and we have to stop him.
"That first step, if you don't read your keys, anybody can get faked out. I want them to get that, so when the game comes, it's easy for them.''
Jim Corbett, USA TODAY Sports