Though neither played in the 55-20 victory over the Oakland Raiders on Sunday, defensive starters Haloti Ngata and Pernell McPhee were on the practice field Wednesday as the Ravens continued preparations for their AFC North showdown with the Pittsburgh Steelers this weekend.
McPhee, a starting defensive end, has missed the past two games with a thigh injury. Asked about him today, Ravens coach John Harbaugh said, "He's getting closer. We'll see how it goes this week."
Ngata, the Pro Bowl defensive tackle who has been dealing with shoulder and knee injuries, was active against the Raiders but never entered the game. He missed pretty much all of practice time last week.
Both practiced today on a limited basis, as did wide receivers Jacoby Jones (ankle) and Torrey Smith (chest) and guard Bobbie Williams (ankle).
The Ravens' two absences from Wednesday's practice were Pro Bowl right guard Marshal Yanda (ankle) and second-year cornerback Jimmy Smith (groin).
Smith was active for the Raiders game but like Ngata, he did not play. On Tuesday, the Ravens signed veteran cornerback Chris Johnson, but Harbaugh said that shouldn't necessarily be looked at as an indication of Smith's condition.
"You can’t have enough corners. We all know that," Harbaugh said. "Jimmy’s got the groin issue. We’re going to have to take that day by day and see where we’re at. But it helps to have Chris Johnson here. … He had a great workout yesterday. He looked really good, great guy, a guy that we’ve always kind of respected as a player. So we’re very excited to have him on board.”
Running back Ray Rice (toe), linebackers Dannell Ellerbe (finger), Terrell Suggs (ankle) and Courtney Upshaw (shoulder) and safeties Sean Considine (knee/chest), Bernard Pollard (chest) and Ed Reed (shoulder/leg/neck) all practiced in full.
For the Steelers, quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (shoulder), wide receiver Antonio Brown (ankle), tackles Marcus Gilbert (ankle) and Max Starks (ankle), linebacker Chris Carter (abdomen), defensive end Brett Keisel (shoulder) and safety Troy Polamalu (calf) did not practice today.
Defensive backs Ryan Clark (concussion), Curtis Brown (quad) and Ivan Taylor (illness) were limed while running back Rashard Mendenhall (achilles) practiced in full.