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Ravens not ruling out Lardarius Webb playing this week if his back responds

The Ravens aren't ruling out veteran cornerback Lardarius Webb returning for Sunday's game against the Indianapolis Colts.

Provided that Webb regains the mobility that's been lost during a lengthy convalescence from a lower back injury that sidelined him for the first two games and the entire preseason, he may be active this week.

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Webb was scratched Sunday against the Carolina Panthers, a decision that followed him playing just four snaps against the Cleveland Browns the previous week, when he was ineffective and immobile in his first action of the season. Webb hasn't experienced any setbacks in his recovery, but the questions surrounding his movement are what's concerning the Ravens right now.

"I'll probably have a pretty good idea after watching practice, but I won't let anybody know until Sunday," Ravens coach John Harbaugh said of Webb on Monday. "It will be based on how he practices and how he looks, just in terms of him getting his acceleration and his burst back, things that everybody saw that weren't quite there. They tell me that he's healthy now and he says he feels healthy.

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"It's just a matter of that strength, quickness and burst, which should come back fast. Anybody that's ever trained, if you've been in great shape, you get back in shape pretty quickly in terms of strength and burst and things like that. He's working very hard at it. It very well could be this week. I'm sure hoping it's this week. I want to see it this week. We'll shoot for that."

The Ravens restructured Webb's five-year, $50 million contract before the season, converting $4 million his $7.5 million into a base salary to reduce his salary-cap figure by $3 million for this season, down to $7.504 million.

Webb is due base salaries of $8 million apiece in 2015 and 2016 with salary-cap figures of $12 million each year.

It's going to be pivotal to Webb's future with the Ravens that he get back on the field and regain his old form, or the team will face some tough decisions about his status going forward.

awilson@baltsun.com
twitter.com/RavensInsider

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