Ravens cornerback Jimmy Smith left little doubt that he plans on being on the field Sunday against the Chicago Bears. Defensive tackle Brandon Williams was coy, but he said after Friday’s practice that he is nearing a return.
“Right on schedule. Right where it needs to be. I feel good,” Williams said in his first public comments since sustaining a foot injury in a Week 2 victory over the Cleveland Browns. “Actually got out there and did scout team, look team stuff. I was out there. I was practicing. It felt good. I was out there running [Thursday], doing get-offs and 10-yard, 20-yard sprints. It felt good.”
Williams, though, was listed as doubtful on the game’s final injury report and he’s expected to miss his fourth straight game Sunday. However, his return to practice Friday on a limited basis bodes well for a return for the Ravens’ Week 7 matchup against the Minnesota Vikings.
As expected, the Ravens ruled out running back Terrance West (calf), leaving Alex Collins and Buck Allen to carry the load against the Bears. They also ruled out right guard Matt Skura (knee). Rookie fifth-round pick Jermaine Eluemunor is in line to make his first career start at right guard Sunday.
Outside linebacker Tim Williams is also doubtful after straining his hamstring earlier in the week.
Smith, who didn’t practice Wednesday and Thursday and was limited Friday, was one of seven Ravens listed as questionable. Smith has been bothered for several weeks with an Achilles’ injury and he played just seven defensive snaps in Sunday’s victory over the Oakland Raiders. However, he said he plans on playing Sunday.
“It’s tendinitis. If you know anything about it, it’s really severe. It’s calmed down a lot. I can go,” Smith said. “I’ve never actually dealt with this before, so I don’t really know the major approach to it. The plan is to just get ahead of it, which we have and keep it calm, so I can go out there and perform.”
The other six players listed as questionable were wide receivers Jeremy Maclin (shoulder) and Breshad Perriman (knee), tight end Maxx Williams (ankle), defensive tackleCarl Davis (hamstring), and defensive backs Jaylen Hill (hamstring) and Anthony Levine Sr. (hamstring). Of that group, Davis, who practiced on a limited basis Friday after being sidelined earlier this week, appears to be the biggest health question mark.
“It’ll probably be a game-time decision with Carl,” Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. “He was out here the other day at practice, looked good. We’ll just have to see how he feels Sunday.”
Canady getting close: When the Ravens put Maurice Canady on injured reserve, the best hope was that he’d rehabilitate his surgically repaired knee and potentially be able to return in time for the Nov. 5 game against the Tennessee Titans, the first game the second-year cornerback would be eligible to play in.
It’s too early to say that will happen, but Harbaugh said Friday that Canady is getting closer to a return to the field. The 2016 sixth-round pick is allowed to practice next week.
“It is on our radar. We’re looking at that as a possibility,” Harbaugh said. “The rule is six weeks to return to practice, eight weeks to return to play – at the earliest. You have to have a two-week grace period there. Then, I think you have up to three weeks to decide with one of those guys, once you bring them up to practice, whether you’re going to put them on the 53-man [roster]. So, Maurice is in the ballpark for that. He’s been seeing the doctors; he’s been rehabbing hard. We’ll just have to see where we’re at starting next week.”
Running back Danny Woodhead, who is the Ravens’ other likely candidate to return off injured reserve, wouldn’t be able to play until Nov. 19 against the Green Bay Packers because he hurt his hamstring in Week 1. Canady sustained his knee injury in training camp.
“Danny wouldn’t be practicing next week – I can tell you that. So, Maurice has a chance for next week; Danny would not have a chance,” Harbaugh said. “[And] that’s just practice – they can’t play, or anything like that. We just have to see where he’s at next week. Now, Danny, that evaluation goes on. It’ll be soon; he becomes eligible here shortly.”
End zone: Ravens rush linebacker Terrell Suggs was given off from Friday’s practice for the third straight week. … The Bears declared wide receiver Markus Wheaton (groin) and linebacker John Timu (knee/ankle) out for Sunday’s game. Center Hroniss Grasu (hand) and inside linebacker Nick Kwiatkoski (chest) are questionable. … Harbaugh’s father, Jack, and ex-college coach Mike Gottfried attended Friday’s practice.