Although Kelechi Osemele didn't practice all week, he's not ruled out for Sunday's game
By By Aaron Wilson
The Baltimore Sun|
Oct 10, 2014 at 2:34 PM
Although Ravens left guard Kelechi Osemele didn't practice all week, he hasn't been ruled out for Sunday's game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Osemele is regarded as a game-time decision due to a bruised and slightly hyperextended right knee that he sustained during a 20-13 loss to the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday. He's officially listed as questionable on the injury report.
Osemele is expected to make the trip to Tampa Bay and test out his knee before kickoff to see if he can go.
"He can play on Sunday having not practiced all week," Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. "He has a chance to play on Sunday. Very tough guy."
If Osemele can't play, he would likely be replaced in the lineup by backup center-guard Gino Gradkowski.
"You really want those guys to be versatile, the center-guard," Harbaugh said. "Whenever you have a backup, you want a guy to be able to back up all three spots. Usually, the tough thing is getting him to be able to backup at center.
"He's really a center who can play guard, which he played a lot in college. He's been practicing at guard. He can do it. I'm very confident he can do it when called upon. There will be a point when he'll be called upon. We feel like we're deep. Whoever goes in there is going to play well."
Gradkowski started every game at center last season. He was replaced as the starter during the offseason when the Ravens traded for Jeremy Zuttah from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
"Every week, I just prepare myself like I'm going to start," Gradkowski said. "This week's no different than the weeks past. I'll be ready for whatever situation happens."
The Ravens have a tough matchup Sunday with All-Pro defensive tackle Gerald McCoy that would provide a test for the offensive line with or without Osemele in the lineup. McCoy has 14 tackles, two sacks and six quarterback hits.
"He's a damn good player," Pro Bowl right guard Marshal Yanda said. "He's got that quick get-off as an interior guy. That's definitely one of his strengths."