OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- Hours before the Baltimore Ravens and San Francisco 49ers held their first joint practice Saturday, their head coaches clearly were wary about the potential of fights between the teams and how it will be characterized by the media.
Ravens coach John Harbaugh said it was a "real indictment" on the media when cornerback Jimmy Smith said he just sees fighting on television when two teams practice together.
"We're going to probably have 99 percent all great positive things," Harbaugh said. "But [if] there is a little shoving match out here, I'm quite sure that's what will be on these cameras and it'll be country-wide. That'll be everybody's take on how it went. That's how it is every time. We're going to look for the positive and you all can look for the negative as usual."
Harbaugh then ended his lecture to reporters by saying, "I'm going after the media here -- with a smile on my face."
49ers coach Jim Harbaugh typically throws out players when they engage in fighting. He said he doesn't anticipate that happening during the three joint practices.
"There will be many cameras gathered and I'm sure that's what everybody is going to be looking for," Jim Harbaugh said. "That moment where you can capture the negative."
Jim Harbaugh said he expects both teams to be safe and take care of each other on the practice field.
"That's the kind of environment where iron sharpens iron," Jim Harbaugh said. "We're looking for good practice work. These aren't games out here. This is practice. This is drills. We expect really good practice."
The Ravens and 49ers will have a full-contact practice on Saturday afternoon, and they could have others on Sunday and Monday. But there will be limitations. The only players who will get tackled to the ground are the younger ones.
Still, there is an uncertainty on what will happen when the intensity of practice takes over.
"It should be interesting. I don't know what else to say beside: Who knows?," Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco said. "I said it before: We have fights with our own teammates. I'm sure one little thing could kick something off."
There has been nothing set yet on the Ravens' trip to the 49ers' facility. John Harbaugh said the teams will talk about it next spring.
"At some point in time, we'll get back there," John Harbaugh said. "Hopefully, we can do it next year. We'll just have to see."