Suggs: Smith 'better man'

RAVENS NOTEBOOK

Linebacker states QB preference on radio, then pulls back

October 23, 2008|By Jamison Hensley | Jamison Hensley,jamison.hensley@baltsun.com

In a recent interview with an Atlanta radio station, linebacker Terrell Suggs said twice that Troy Smith should be the Ravens' starting quarterback over Joe Flacco.

"Right now, I think [Flacco is] all right," Suggs told 2 Live Stews, a nationally syndicated radio show that is not aired in Baltimore. "But like I said, in the end, Troy should be the starter [because he's] the better man for the job."

Smith, the 2006 Heisman Trophy winner at Ohio State, was considered the front-runner for the starting job in the preseason before he missed several weeks of practice with a tonsil infection. He was the Ravens' No. 2 quarterback for the first time Sunday.

Flacco, the Ravens' first-round pick this year, has completed 64.1 percent of his passes, throwing for two touchdowns and seven interceptions. Coach John Harbaugh recently named Flacco the starting quarterback for the rest of the season.

"He started out hot," Suggs told 2 Live Stews. "We played two teams who were in the bottom of the league in defense [the Browns and Bengals]. So, everybody was going all crazy about him."

Asked about his comments yesterday, Suggs denied saying Smith should be the starter.

"That's not what I said," Suggs said. "When he asked me, I said there should be multiple packages. I think both should get a chance to play."

Suggs emphasized that Flacco and Smith have different strengths that the Ravens should use in their offense.

"I think it would better if we had both of them playing," Suggs said. "Then again, I ain't no damn offensive coordinator."

Meanwhile, an NFL spokesman confirmed that the league is investigating Suggs for his comments about having a "bounty" on Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Hines Ward.

In the same radio interview, he called Ward "a dirty player" and "a cheap-shot artist."

But Suggs said yesterday that there is no bounty on Ward.

'Read between the lines'

Cornerback Chris McAlister gave an interesting response when asked whether his play warranted getting benched Sunday against the Miami.

"You all go look at the tape of the first four weeks and tell me if it feels like I need to be on the field or not," said McAlister, who had three interceptions during that stretch.

McAlister was more cryptic when asked whether he has been disciplined by Harbaugh. "You have to read between the lines," he said. "I don't know. He said I wasn't disciplined, so I wasn't disciplined."

Ogden to be honored

Eleven-time Pro Bowl offensive tackle Jonathan Ogden will be placed into the Ravens' Ring of Honor at halftime of Sunday's game against the Raiders.

"I expected it, but when it came, it was still kind of a shock," said Ogden, who retired before the season.

Injury update

Strong safety Dawan Landry (neck), cornerback Samari Rolle (neck) and offensive tackle Adam Terry (knee) were ruled out of Sunday's game. Safety Ed Reed (hamstring), returner Yamon Figurs (knee) and wide receiver Demetrius Williams (ankle) did not practice. McAlister (knee), offensive tackle Jared Gaither (neck) and running back Willis McGahee (knee) were limited.

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