Sanders possibility intrigues McAlister

Ravens notebook

Raven says he'd sell No. 21 if move happens, be in camp by month's end

Ravens notebook

August 18, 2004|By Mike Preston | Mike Preston,SUN STAFF

Ravens Pro Bowl cornerback Chris McAlister said he plans to join the team by the end of this month, and is excited about the team possibly adding cornerback Deion Sanders to the roster as a fifth defensive back in passing situations.

McAlister, the team's designated franchise player who has been holding out of training camp, said he would even sell his jersey No. 21 to Sanders if the price were right.

"I'll sell anything. Sure, I'll sell it to him for a year," McAlister said. "He doesn't have to pay for it all up front. He can pay me in installments. If he needs a car to drive around, I'll sell him one of those, too. I wish I had known he was coming sooner because I could have sold him my house in Reisterstown. I sold that about a month ago."

Asked what the going price was for selling a jersey number, McAlister replied: "When Shannon Sharpe came to Baltimore, he offered Jermaine Lewis a $40,000 Rolex watch [for No. 84]. I'm not saying that's what it is going to take, but it has to be an attractive package."

McAlister indicated he was in excellent shape, and reporting in late August should give him ample time to get into playing shape for the opener against the Browns in Cleveland on Sept. 12.

"I plan on being the starting corner when we play Cleveland," McAlister said. "I'll come in and be ready to prove to anybody that I'm ready to start and play."

Story of Ricard's success

Ravens fullback Alan Ricard is a great success story.

He was originally signed by the Dallas Cowboys as a rookie free agent out of Northeast Louisiana in 1999 but was cut in training camp. He was signed by the Ravens a year later, cut, and then re-signed to the team's practice squad.

He became a full-time starter in 2002, and came close to making the AFC Pro Bowl squad last year.

"My goal is to go out there and be the best fullback. I think my chances are great," said Ricard about making the Pro Bowl squad this year.

Rabach out again

Reserve guard/center Casey Rabach missed his second straight day of practice yesterday because of a sprained knee. It's not a serious injury, but Rabach is missing crucial time in his battle with Bennie Anderson to start at right guard.

"It's day to day, and they want me to take it slow," said Rabach. "This definitely hurts me. Anytime you're not in there, the guy in front of you definitely gets more reps, so you try to get back as soon as possible.

"You're always concerned about how much the injury is hurting your chances, but you don't want to go out there without being 100 percent either."

Stewart's shoulder sore

Quarterback Kordell Stewart experienced soreness in his throwing shoulder yesterday, and did not throw in either the morning or afternoon practices.

The soreness is common for quarterbacks.

"It happens pretty much every year," said Stewart. "We're playing it safe, playing it close right now. He [coach Brian Billick] is just sitting me down, and letting it rest."

Stover stays focused

Matt Stover, one of the league's most reliable field goal kickers, signed a five-year contract in March. You might figure he was comfortable, and complacency might set in for a player entering his 15th season.

Think again.

"Training camp for me is getting ready for the opener, getting my eyes trained, getting the timing down with my snapper and holder and getting back into the situational type of kicking you need to have prior to the regular season," said Stover.

"I know people can say Matt Stover was signed to a five-year contract, but that doesn't mean I don't have pressure on me, that doesn't mean there isn't someone out there who can take my job."

Spurrier attends practice

Former Florida and Washington Redskins coach Steve Spurrier attended the early morning practice yesterday.

Spurrier said he was there to watch several of his former Gators players but eventually was invited to join the team on the field by Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome. Spurrier later met with Billick in Billick's office.

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