When the Ravens evaluate their safety position, they do so with the hope that safety Terrence Brooks could potentially bolster the spot at some point this year.
Since tearing the anterior cruciate ligament and medial collateral ligament in his right knee last December against the Jacksonville Jaguars and having the damage repaired by Dr. James Andrews, Brooks says he's made steady progress in his rehabilitation. He hasn't ruled out a return this year after starting the season on the physically unable to perform list, but will be careful about rushing to avoid a setback.
"It's going really good," Brooks told The Baltimore Sun. "To be honest, we're probably a little bit ahead of schedule. I haven't had a break since I've been hurt. It's been straight rehab since Dr. Andrews did the surgery.
"I actually had the ACL and the MCL. The MCL was a little bit too damaged to let it heal on its own, so they went ahead and took care of that one, too. It's feeling pretty strong, though."
Brooks was drafted in the third round last year out of Florida State and finished with 19 tackles, two passes defended and a fumble recovery in 11 games.
Alhough Brooks didn't start a game as a rookie after being drafted in third round out of Florida State he displayed potential. He delivered a concussion-causing hit when he blasted Tennessee Titans tight end Delanie Walker. He was also benched after allowing a long touchdown pass to wide receiver Marques Colston against the New Orleans Saints.
"Terrence was a guy that had shown flashes," Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome said earlier this year. "It'll be tough for him to be ready to go at the beginning of the season, but he should be able to help us out coming off of PUP."
Brooks got hurt covering a kickoff against the Jaguars. There are some scenarios where he could contribute this year, but the Ravens are being cautious. The timing of Brooks' injury makes it difficult for him to get back on the field. Brooks will miss at least the first six games of the season before attempting to practice.
"We're just hoping for the best, trying to get back as soon as possible," Brooks said. "We're taking precautious. We definitely don't want to rush back too fast. If you do get cleared, playing this year is definitely a goal. You don't want to rush it.
"For the most part, you have to be cautious and take it easy. After we get off of the PUP list, we'll see where we're at. I definitely want to get back into it, but we're taking our time. I have high hopes of being ready."