Grbac, Allen increase practice time

RAVENS NOTEBOOK

Injured starters remain questionable

Cunningham prepares for second start

Pro Football

November 01, 2001|By Brent Jones | Brent Jones,SUN STAFF

Quarterback Elvis Grbac and running back Terry Allen had their most extensive workouts in more than a week during yesterday's practice.

Both are questionable for Sunday's game at Pittsburgh, Grbac more so than Allen. While Allen was able to run on his injured ankle and put in some extra work after practice, Grbac took only a few snaps with backup Randall Cunningham receiving most of the work. Grbac is still recovering from a rib injury suffered in Cleveland on Oct. 21.

Cunningham and Jason Brookins started for Grbac and Allen, respectively, in the Ravens' 18-17 win over Jacksonville on Sunday.

"I feel like I'm about 65, 70 percent," Grbac said. "That entails a couple more days of rest. It is really more of a day-to-day thing."

Grbac will look to do more work today. The Ravens likely will not make a decision until Sunday.

"I'm feeling pretty good. To give it some more time, sure it would help," Grbac said. "And Randall's done a great job. That is what you ask of a veteran guy. As a quarterback, do you put yourself at harm's way for the rest of the season or do you take more time and really get well? Those are the decisions that I have to make with the training staff."

Meanwhile, coaches are preparing Cunningham as though he will be the starter for the second straight week.

"We'll get as much rotation as we can to make sure that they all, meaning both Elvis and Randall, get enough reps to be comfortable with what we're doing," Ravens coach Brian Billick said.

Brookins runs reverse

Brookins back-tracked yesterday from his comments about the Steelers defense. Brookins said Monday that he did not know how physical the Steelers were, and that he would watch their game Monday night to see if he could spot a few holes in the defense.

"The whole reason why I said that is because I never played against them," Brookins said. "I wasn't trying to knock those guys. I was just saying that I never played against them, and I'll see whether they are physical or not when I get on the field with them."

As for what Brookins learned from watching the Steelers dismantle the Titans on Monday, he said: "They have a lot of speed to the ball. That is something that we are going to have to try and minimize."

Johnson healing

Receiver Patrick Johnson continues to rehab his broken clavicle, sustained in the fourth quarter of the Titans game Oct. 7. He is expected to miss eight weeks.

"I'm working out, lifting on my other arm," Johnson said. "Basically, it is just the healing process. It will probably take another four weeks.

"I can pick stuff up barely. I'm just getting all my cardio work in. Next week, they might let me jog."

Accidents happen

Long snapper Joe Maese was married Tuesday, the players' day off.

The excitement, though, started after the wedding, when Maese and his wife Monique were involved in a minor car accident heading to the reception.

"We got rear-ended on the freeway," Maese said. "Nothing happened to my truck, but [the other car] was pretty banged up. It made for an interesting day. The good thing is that everyone was OK."

Extra points

The Ravens had expressed a mild interest in ex-Detroit Lions tackle Aaron Gibson. But Gibson, a former first-round draft choice in 1999, was claimed by the Dallas Cowboys off waivers yesterday. ... Center Mike Flynn said he had no problems snapping with his right hand in practice. Flynn tore a ligament in his thumb Sunday. ... The Ravens signed end Corey Callens to the practice squad in place of Dwayne Missouri, who was acquired Tuesday by Dallas. ... Sunday's Ravens-Jaguars game was the highest watched program in the Baltimore area for the week of Oct. 22-28. Every Ravens game this season has been either first or second in the area. ... Defensive tackle Lional Dalton won the best costume award at Shannon Sharpe's Goodwill Halloween party Tuesday night. "I was a voodoo witch doctor," Dalton said. "I actually had a real lion across my chest. A guy had it made but he didn't come. So the lady rented it to me for $100 bucks. I won a trip to Jamaica, so it was great."

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