Left guard Ben Grubbs returned to practice Thursday, but running back Ray Rice was missing from the portion open to the media.

Rice practiced Wednesday and did not mention an ailment. So the guess here is that the two-time Pro Bowl selection is getting a day of rest.

Grubbs did not practice Wednesday. He continues to rehabilitate the strained ligaments in the big toe on his right foot that shelved him for six consecutive games this season.

Five players who did not practice Wednesday were not present Thursday: linebackers Ray Lewis (turf toe on right foot), Jameel McClain (sprained knee) and Brendon Ayanbadejo (sprained right quad), right guard Marshal Yanda (rib and thigh bruises), and defensive tackle Haloti Ngata (lacerated elbow).

Two players who missed the regular-season finale against the Cincinnati Bengals – wide receiver Anquan Boldin (knee surgery) and inside linebacker Dannell Ellerbe (post-concussion symptoms) – practiced for the second straight day.

Three players who sustained injuries against the Bengals – safeties Bernard Pollard (sprained wrist and bruised elbow) and Tom Zbikowski (concussion) and rookie cornerback Jimmy Smith (concussion) – also took part in practice.