Ivy looks to raise his game

RAVENS NOTEBOOK

Cornerback had solid start vs. Arizona

D. Edwards embraces his starting role

September 28, 2007|By Edward Lee | Edward Lee,SUN REPORTER

Cornerback Corey Ivy compiled five tackles, a sack and a strip and fumble recovery of Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald in the Ravens' 26-23 victory over the Cardinals on Sunday.

And he still wasn't entirely pleased.

"There were a few technical things that I've got to get corrected," said Ivy, who filled in for an ailing Samari Rolle. "It just goes with getting more experience out there and playing with the first unit. If the opportunity presents itself, I can go out there and improve on the performance that I did last week."

Ivy will get that chance when he makes a second consecutive start against the Cleveland Browns on Sunday. Rolle, who has been battling a lack of energy caused by the medication he is taking, has been ruled out for Sunday.

Defensive coordinator Rex Ryan confirmed that Ivy will line up opposite fellow starting cornerback Chris McAlister.

While Ryan and coach Brian Billick insisted that players like David Pittman and Ronnie Prude also could get extended playing time against the Browns, Billick sounded impressed with Ivy.

"Corey played very, very tough against two very, very good receivers [in the Cardinals' Fitzgerald and Anquan Boldin]," Billick said. "And the competitive toughness that you knew he would bring to the field is the thing that jumped out at you."

Ivy's ferociousness and determination have made him a favorite in the team's locker room, where the 5-foot-9, 188-pound defender is sometimes compared to a pit bull.

Ivy frequently delivered bone-jarring hits to his teammates during training camp, and he's not afraid to tangle with bigger receivers.

"I compete in whatever I do -- whether that's against an opponent or with my teammates or in pickup basketball," he said. "That was just instilled in me from when I was a young kid and not wanting to lose and not wanting to come up on the short end of the stick. If you compete, good things will happen eventually."

Injury updates

Linebacker Ray Lewis (ankle) and wide receivers Mark Clayton (calf) and Demetrius Williams (heel) were limited in practice for the second straight day, but the team upgraded linebacker Gary Stills (knee), who practiced fully yesterday.

Edwards likes role

Dwan Edwards did not post any numbers that showed up in the final stats of Sunday's game, but the fourth-year defensive tackle said he felt comfortable in his first start since Dec. 11, 2005.

Edwards, who has played in 27 games and could start in as many as four more in place of the injured Trevor Pryce (broken wrist), said the difference between starting and coming off the bench is noticeable.

"As a starter, you get more of a feel for the game [in terms of] what the offense is trying to do to you," Edwards said. "As the backup, you don't get all of the looks. You just go in there for a few plays, and you don't get a chance to feel out how the offensive linemen are blocking you and how they're trying to run the ball and stuff. It's just getting more reps and being able to get more of a feel of the game."

A song about Stover

Celebrated for kicking the game-winning field goal against the Cardinals, Matt Stover has now been immortalized in song.

Stover, who kicked four field goals, including the 46-yarder that was the difference in the victory, is the centerpiece of a musical tribute playing on WHFS (105.7 FM) that borrows heavily from Chris Daughtry's song "It's Not Over."

"I thought, `Man, that guy's got a good voice. He's actually got a good tone,' " Stover said. "It's great, great fun, and I appreciate that Baltimore feels that way about me. God willing, it will continue so that I don't have a hate song coming out or something like that."

Browns injuries

Browns tight end Kellen Winslow missed his second straight practice because of a partially dislocated left shoulder, but Ravens linebacker Bart Scott wasn't biting. "That's gaming, man. I don't want to hear that," Scott said. "He'll be up for it. I don't want to hear that one. Everybody's doubtful every week in the NFL. I'm doubtful."

Meanwhile, former Ravens cornerback Gary Baxter is still trying to become the first player in NFL history to come back from offseason surgery to repair torn patellar tendons in both knees.

He has been inactive for the Browns' first three games.

edward.lee@baltsun.com

Sun reporter Jamison Hensley contributed to this article.

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