Taylor forced from practice because of heat

RAVENS NOTEBOOK

When he returns, J. Lewis will work on conditioning

Notebook

August 05, 2005|By Jamison Hensley | Jamison Hensley,SUN STAFF

Chester Taylor's legs became wobbly before his body became limp.

Looking overworked and overheated, the Ravens running back collapsed to the ground. Carted off the field with 15 minutes left in practice, Taylor is the second heat-related incident in the first week of training camp, during which temperatures have regularly reached the mid-90s.

But Taylor, who is running with the starters until Jamal Lewis returns, received only tough love afterward.

"Chester has to be ready to handle all the carries of a No. 1 back," running backs coach Matt Simon said. "It's something I was hoping he could physically develop through. Obviously, we're not quite there yet. He was a little bit exhausted physically. Hopefully, he'll bounce back pretty quick.

"The reality is if you want to be the bell cow, this is what life is like."

With Lewis temporarily stuck in Atlanta and No. 3 back Musa Smith still not fully recovered from a broken leg, the Ravens had to bump Tellis Redmon up with the first team yesterday.

"I hope everything is all right with Chester," said Redmon, who spent the 2002 season on the practice squad, "but I hope they give me the opportunity again to run with the ones [starters]."

Waiting for J. Lewis

If Lewis arrives from Atlanta on Monday - which is not a guarantee - the Ravens are looking to get their starting running back on the field by midweek. Once Lewis reports, he will have two days of conditioning drills before suiting up for contact drills.

Lewis' return was delayed until next week because of some issues with his probation.

"It backs up the progression to get him into the flow," coach Brian Billick said. "It doesn't kill us, but it's unfortunate."

Mulitalo getting ready

After being sidelined for all of the Ravens minicamps, left guard Edwin Mulitalo has yet to miss any reps in training camp.

The seven-year veteran is coming off a rough offseason that included two surgeries. He had his torn left triceps repaired in December and then had gout removed from his knee a few weeks ago.

Asked how he was feeling, Mulitalo, 30, grinned and said, "I'm feeling old. It's kind of frustrating. I'm not where I want to be right now, but I'm focusing on Sept. 11 [season opener].

"It's getting that communication between my mind and my leg and getting them to speak the same language."

A first look

The Ravens' scrimmage against the Washington Redskins tomorrow will gauge where the team is after one week in training camp. Of the eight scheduled drives, the Ravens' starting offense and defense will take one each.

"This not about scheming an opponent," Billick said. "This is about getting a good, solid evaluation of the guys you have on your team."

Home sweet home

Starting Wednesday, veterans were allowed to go home at night for the remainder of the three-week training camp.

For the third straight year, players can leave after afternoon practices or evening meetings and return to McDaniel College the next morning for the mandatory team breakfast. Only rookies are required to remain at the team hotel.

End zone

As is typical in camp, minor injuries continue to add up. Defensive tackle Kelly Gregg (hyperextended elbow) and returner B.J. Sams (hamstring) are considered day-to-day. ... With afternoon thunderstorms expected today, the Ravens have moved the second practice to their indoor facility in Owings Mills. It will be closed to the public. The morning practice will remain at McDaniel College. ... The Ravens have sold 28,000 tickets for tomorrow's scrimmage at M&T Bank Stadium. Tickets are general admission and can be purchased at the stadium. It's $12 for sideline seats and $7 in the end zone.

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