McAlister, Starks still limp, but both expect Sunday start

September 06, 2001|By Jamison Hensley | Jamison Hensley,SUN STAFF

Ravens starting cornerbacks Chris McAlister and Duane Starks were both listed as questionable for Sunday's season opener against the Chicago Bears, but both said they expected to play.

McAlister, who has not missed a game in his two seasons with the Ravens, practiced lightly yesterday, trying to keep from running on his sprained ankle.

"I'm playing," McAlister said. "I'm just resting it up right now. It's nothing serious. They just told me to sit out and not worry about stressing on it right now."

Starks missed practice yesterday with a knee injury. He has only been sidelined once in his three-year career.

"I think I'm a definite go," Starks said. "I'm just waiting to see to make sure I don't mess anything up."

McAlister and Starks will face a receiving corps for the Bears that is also hurting. The team's top receiver, Marcus Robinson, is questionable with a lower-back injury. That leaves the Bears with inexperienced Marty Booker, Dez White and David Terrell, their first-round pick.

The Ravens have had James Trapp and rookie Alvin Porter work at the cornerback spots in place of McAlister and Starks.

"They will work their way through," coach Brian Billick said. "But I'm optimistic."

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