Harbaugh: Reed will be ready

RAVENS NOTEBOOK

McGahee also expected to return for opener

August 12, 2008|By Jamison Hensley and Edward Lee | Jamison Hensley and Edward Lee,Sun reporters

Trying to clear up doubts about two of his star players, Ravens coach John Harbaugh said he expects safety Ed Reed and running back Willis McGahee to be ready for the Sept. 7 regular-season opener against the Cincinnati Bengals.

Reed, a four-time Pro Bowl player, was activated off the physically-unable-to-perform list Saturday but has not engaged in any contact because of a shoulder injury.

Reed seemed uncertain whether he would be able to play at the start of the regular season, saying: "It's day-to-day right now. I've just been getting treatment on it. It's a little bit more in-depth than you've been hearing about. I can't really explain it at this point because I'm still researching it myself, but I figure it might be all right."

Harbaugh said there has been "a lot of progress" made with Reed's injury.

"No, I'm not doubtful of [Reed's availability for the season opener] at all based on what we've been told by the doctors," Harbaugh said after morning practice yesterday. "I understand as an athlete, you want it to be right."

Harbaugh also confirmed that McGahee is undergoing arthroscopic surgery on his left knee in Miami.

But Harbaugh said McGahee should be cleared in time to start against the Bengals.

"We were confident without the 'scope that he would have been ready," he said. "We just feel like this is a cautionary procedure and [we want to] make sure we're right."

Roster moves

The team placed two backups, running back P.J. Daniels (separated shoulder) and linebacker Prescott Burgess (broken left wrist), on injured reserve, ending their seasons.

The Ravens also released fullback Justin Green, a fifth-round pick in 2005. The moves made room for the team to sign former Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive tackle Darrell Campbell and former New Orleans Saints linebacker Terrence Melton.

Because of the number of injuries, the Ravens needed to cut Green from the 80-man roster to add more depth at other positions.

Through the uprights

Matt Stover might have some competition from an unlikely source.

For the second consecutive day, punter Sam Koch kicked field goals during practice. With Stover and rookie Piotr Czech given the day off, Koch connected on attempts of 20, 28, 35 and 42 yards.

"I used to do it in high school and mess around with it in college just to keep that skill there in case there ever was an emergency," Koch said. "It was fun."

End zone

As part of the 30-and-over club, cornerbacks Samari Rolle and Corey Ivy, linebackers Ray Lewis and Gary Stills, wide receiver Derrick Mason, defensive end Trevor Pryce and Stover did not practice yesterday. ... Offensive tackle Mike Kracalik said he dislocated the middle finger on his left hand yesterday morning but didn't anticipate missing any practice time. ... Cornerback David Pittman walked off the field with his left thigh iced and wrapped, but participated in special teams practice in the afternoon.

edward.lee@baltsun.com jamison.hensley@baltsun.com

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