Thomas injures knee, says he is fine

RAVENS NOTEBOOK

Linebacker will likely miss preseason opener

Clayton limited on his second day

Ravens

August 10, 2005|By Brent Jones | Brent Jones,SUN STAFF

Linebacker Adalius Thomas hyperextended his right knee late in the morning session yesterday, likely keeping him out of Saturday night's preseason opener against the Atlanta Falcons.

Thomas hurt the knee on a handoff play to running back Chester Taylor at the Ravens' indoor training facility in Owings Mills. Teammates flocked to Thomas as soon as he went down before the training staff rushed the field. Thomas eventually limped off under his own power.

The injury appeared serious at first, but a magnetic resonance imaging test showed there was no ligament or meniscus damage. Thomas wore a wrap around his knee and professed to be fine.

Second-year linebacker Roderick Green is expected to replace Thomas in the lineup against the Falcons. Bart Scott may also move back to outside linebacker from the middle. The Ravens also have lost linebacker Dan Cody probably for the season with a knee injury suffered the first practice.

Thomas started every game last season and finished with career highs in sacks (eight) and tackles (80).

Clayton getting `jitters out'

Day 2 for Mark Clayton strikingly resembled Day 1, with the rookie receiver limited mostly to catching punts on special teams.

Clayton saw a couple of plays in team drills but was largely held out of the full-contact portion. Clayton is still expected to play against the Falcons.

"Getting those first-day jitters out, Day 2 was more getting into the swing of things," Clayton said. "I feel good."

Lloyd kicking well

Many have come and gone in the search for a kickoff specialist, so now the Ravens have gone across seas to find someone to hold the job.

Rookie free agent Rhys Lloyd, originally from Dover, England, has been sending kicks inside the 5-yard line with regularity. The Ravens would prefer to have a kickoff specialist so Matt Stover can concentrate solely on field goals.

"I'm excited to be here, just to have the opportunity to become part of a professional organization," Lloyd said. "I'm learning off Matt. I'm going to try and do my best, and hopefully that will be good enough.

"I just need to show a good leg and consistency, putting it inside the 5 every time."

Mughelli secure as backup

Fullback Ovie Mughelli is not at all worried about job security in the backup spot behind starter Alan Ricard. "There's competition for this position every year, so I'm really not worried about it," Mughelli said.

This year, his competition comes from rookie Justin Green, the Ravens' fifth-round pick. Mughelli would not comment on how Green's ability compared to his own, saying only, "I hope the coaches see that I'm able to be a starting fullback on this team."

According to Mughelli, the real test of the two men will come in Atlanta. "This Saturday, just don't blink, because I have a lot planned for the Atlanta Falcons," Mughelli said.

Mughelli played in only three games last season before being placed on injured reserve for his hamstring in November.

McAlister gets breather

Chris McAlister missed practice yesterday. Apparently, it was simply a day of rest for the cornerback.

"Chris had been going at it pretty good," Ravens coach Brian Billick said. "We've been on a rotation with guys taking a morning or an afternoon [off]. It seemed prudent for him to do that now."

McAlister is expected to practice today.

Sun staff writer Kim Phelan contributed to this article.

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