Suggs' status still up in air

RAVENS NOTEBOOK

Slowed by hamstring, he is hopeful of playing

Chargers spotless on sacks

September 30, 2006|By Edward Lee | Edward Lee,Sun Reporter

The availability of Ravens linebacker Terrell Suggs for the game against the San Diego Chargers tomorrow at M&T Bank Stadium won't be determined until a couple of hours before kickoff.

Coach Brian Billick said he won't make a decision before then on Suggs, who is tied for second on the team with three sacks.

Suggs, who injured his right hamstring in Sunday's 15-14 win over the Cleveland Browns, hasn't practiced much this week, but he remained hopeful about playing against the 2-0 Chargers.

"It's coming along," he said yesterday. "Nothing has changed since I talked to you yesterday. It's day-to-day, and we'll know on Sunday."

If Suggs can't play, Jarret Johnson would likely start in Suggs' place. Johnson, who registered 61 tackles last season when he started 12 games, has posted three tackles and five quarterback hurries in the Ravens' first three games.

"I hope Terrell can come back," Johnson said. "But I'm just looking forward to the opportunity to get on the field more."

Free safety Ed Reed (foot) will also be a game-time decision, but he worked on cuts with cornerbacks Chris McAlister and Samari Rolle at the end of practice yesterday. Like Reed, defensive tackle Haloti Ngata (back) is questionable, but he said he intended to play.

Linebacker Bart Scott (foot), tight end Todd Heap (ankle), left guard Edwin Mulitalo (elbow) and wide receiver Demetrius Williams (elbow) were upgraded to probable from questionable.

San Diego's starting trio of wide receiver Keenan McCardell (hamstring), left guard Kris Dielman (hamstring) and defensive end Igor Olshansky (knee) are listed as questionable. But none of the three has missed a practice this week.

Dirty thoughts

To the Ravens, Philip Rivers' jersey could use a little more color - something of the brown, dirt-like quality.

Rivers, the Chargers' first-year starting quarterback, has not been sacked this season, and historically, San Diego has done an admirable job of protecting its quarterbacks, surrendering fewer than 32 sacks per season since 2000.

On the flip side, the Ravens' defense is tied with the Philadelphia Eagles for the most sacks this season with 16 each - a number that Scott noted during a conversation Wednesday.

"San Diego's line hasn't played the Baltimore Ravens," he said. "They've done a good job, and it'll be a test for us. We'll see what we're made of, and they'll see what they're made of."

Tomlinson II?

As spectacular as LaDainian Tomlinson has been for the Chargers, they have another solid running back in third-year veteran Michael Turner.

Turner has rushed for 175 yards on 23 carries (an average of 7.6 yards per carry) and a touchdown, and he posted 138 yards on 13 attempts in San Diego's most recent game, against the Tennessee Titans.

Ravens coach Brian Billick joked that game-planning for one solid running back was all the team could handle. "If they have another kind of back like LaDainian Tomlinson, I'm not going to show up," Billick said. "I hope he's different than that guy. He's probably an excellent back, but there's only one LT."

edward.lee@baltsun.com

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