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Ravens rookie Timmy Jernigan returns to practice Sunday from back injury

FootballBaltimore RavensSan Francisco 49ersLardarius WebbElvis DumervilNFLJohn Harbaugh

Ravens rookie defensive tackle Timmy Jernigan returned to practice Sunday for the first time since experiencing back spasms last Wednesday.

Jernigan said he had back spasms once previously in high school growing up in Lake City, Fla., where he was a prep All-American selection.

"It was good to get back out and get moving a little bit," said Jernigan, a second-round draft pick from Florida State. "They just eased me back in. No setbacks at all, they just want to be very precautious to make sure I was good to go.

"Whenever it's time to go, they'll let me know. I wasn't worried at all. I've been through serious injuries before in college. I know when it's bad and I know when it's not. I had a good feeling about it."

Ravens coach John Harbaugh had predicted that Jernigan would return soon and said that Jernigan emphasized to him that he wants to play Thursday night in the team's preseason opener against the San Francisco 49ers at M&T Bank Stadium.

"I'll be ready to go to work Thursday," Jernigan said. "Definitely, I don't want to miss no games. I love the game. I'm ready for it. I just want to show our fans and show our coaches they made the right choice in bringing me here.

"I expect to play whether it's a preseason game or a regular-season game. I come out and work hard and the coaches see that and will put me on the field."

Jernigan had been off to a fast start at training camp prior to the injury, disrupting plays by shooting gaps to penetrate the backfield. An All-American selection for the national champion Seminoles, Jernigan has impressed coaches and executives with his athleticism.

"I definitely want to stay on that track and make sure I do the right things as far as treatment to get back on the field," Jernigan said. "I feel like I was doing a great job as far as assignments."

Rookie wide receiver Michael Campanaro is out Sunday after suffering bruised ribs Saturday. X-rays determined no break, according to a source.

Meanwhile, cornerback Lardarius Webb is out for at least half the preseason with a lower back injury. Middle linebacker Daryl Smith remains sidelined with a groin injury sustained Monday night.

Also not practicing Sunday is guard Will Rackley (concussion). Tight end Dennis Pitta and outside linebacker Elvis Dumervil appear to have the day off.

Rookie defensive end Brent Urban is out for the season with a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee. The Ravens officially haven't placed him on injured reserve yet, but they will do so at some point and then have an open roster spot against the NFL's 90-player limit.

Urban was pushing for playing time as a rookie before the injury.

"I hate to see that for Brent," Jernigan said. "Brent is one of my closest guys on the team. We have a real tight relationship. All I can do is pray for him and hope that everything goes well."

awilson@baltsun.com

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FootballBaltimore RavensSan Francisco 49ersLardarius WebbElvis DumervilNFLJohn Harbaugh
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