Ravens keep an eye on key players facing injuries

November 07, 2012|By Jeff Zrebiec and Aaron WIlson, The Baltimore Sun

The Ravens held out five starters from practice Wednesday, including two offensive linemen and Pro Bowl defensive players Haloti Ngata and Ed Reed.

Right guard Marshal Yanda (knee) and left guard Bobbie Williams (ankle) and defensive end Pernell McPhee (thigh) were also sidelined.

At this point, none of the five has been ruled out for Sunday's game against the Oakland Raiders and Yanda, who had a magnetic resonance imaging test performed Monday that showed no structural damage, left little doubt that he'll play.

"It's fine," said Yanda, who was replaced by second-year guard/tackle Jah Reid for five plays in the Ravens' 25-15 victory over the Cleveland Browns last Sunday. "I'll be good to go. I just got rolled up a little bit."

Reid or Ramon Harewood, who says the migraine headaches that he's struggled with have mostly subsided, could still be called on if Williams can't go.

"It's minor, that's exactly what it is," said Williams, who was limping noticeably after spraining his left ankle against the Browns. "I'm treating it, getting it right. It will be good."

Ngata, who has been on the injury report for several weeks as he deals with shoulder and ankle issues, barely practiced at all last week. He played in the game, but was held without a tackle for the first time this season. McPhee, meanwhile, was inactive against the Browns and says he feels better.

"I feel great about that but it all boils down to what coach has to say," McPhee said. "I feel better physically and with my playbook. I ain't going to miss a beat when I come back."

Reed (shoulder/knee) is a new addition to the injury report. Wide receivers Jacoby Jones (toe) and David Reed (knee), left tackle Michael Oher (ankle), linebacker Josh Bynes (thigh) and cornerback Jimmy Smith (groin) were limited participants Wednesday.

Ayanbadejo happy same-sex marriage passed

As an advocate for same-sex marriage, Ravens special teams ace Brendon Ayanbadejo is overjoyed that the state of Maryland has now made it legal. Starting in January, Maryland courts can begin issuing marriage licenses to gay couples.

"I'm so stoked," Ayanbadejo said. "It's like I woke up and it was Christmas."

Growing up in California, Ayanbadejo, who's not gay, said he quickly learned to embrace diversity. However, he acknowledged that his stance on the issue was unpopular in the Ravens' locker room.

"There are some guys that are really upset with marriage equality, in the locker room," Ayanbadejo said. "It's something I've been passionate about for a long time. Even though it doesn't affect me directly, it affects a lot of my friends. It affects my family. It affects Ravens fans. It affects Marylanders. I've worked hard on it, very diligently. I've been torn down at times, but lifted up many more than the ones that tore me down. I'm very proud of the Marylanders who went out there and voted and made the difference."

Suggs awaits home debut

Ravens linebacker Terrell Suggs has waited a long time to run out of the tunnel amid cheers upon his name being announced at M&T Bank Stadium. He's more than content to wait another couple of weeks.

Suggs said that he wouldn't lobby Ravens coach John Harbaugh to have the starting defense announced before Sunday's game against the Oakland Raiders. For Suggs, it will be his first home game since his surprisingly early return from a torn right Achilles.

"I'm going to let it stay as it lies because there's a certain home game coming up that we might want the defense to get called out for," he said, referring to the team's Dec. 2 meeting with the Pittsburgh Steelers. "But that's pretty much Coach's call. It's all in fun. We have enough marquee offensive guys that the crowd can still get into it, especially with Mighty Mouse [running back Ray Rice]. When I first got here, it certainly wasn't as loud when the offense got introduced compared to the defense. Now it's just as loud. It's pretty awesome, and it's going to be fun whichever team gets introduced."

Suggs said that it's going to be "weird" playing again at M&T Bank Stadium "but it's where I belong. Rehabbing and being in the training room is not where I belong. It's not the place for me."

End zone

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