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Ravens' Will Hill, Terrence Cody both expected to practice this week

Although they aren't slated to play Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons, safety Will Hill and nose tackle Terrence Cody are expected to return to practice this week.

Although they aren't expected to play Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons, safety Will Hill and nose tackle Terrence Cody are both set to return to practice this week.

Hill returns from a six-game suspension for violating the NFL's substance-abuse policy, after previous attempts to shorten his punishment by the NFL Players Association under the revised drug policy were unsuccessful.

The former New York Giants starter will be under a roster exemption this week as the Ravens evaluate his conditioning and performance in comparison to their other safeties and then make a decision next week on whether to place him on the active roster.

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"My understanding is he can practice for a week without being on the roster because he's got an exemption and then he has to be put on the roster or not, so we've got until next week," Ravens coach John Harbaugh said of Hill.

Harbaugh didn't completely rule out the possibility of Hill playing Sunday, but it's regarded as unlikely.

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"It just depends on where he's at physically," Harbaugh said. "He's been in every meeting. He should be caught up mentally. There is a difference between sitting in a meeting. Any one of us can understand the defense, but even if we had the talent, getting out on the field is a different perspective. It really is. We'll just have to see how he looks in practice, how he fits, what our personnel looks like."

Cody is eligible to begin practicing, but he remains on the reserve physically unable to perform list and doesn't count against the active roster. Cody underwent offseason hip surgery.

Cody is visibly leaner now, with the 6-foot-4 defensive lineman saying he has lost roughly 60 pounds since college, when he was an All-Southeastern Conference selection. Cody said he currently weighs between 327 and 330 pounds.

"Right now, the plan is for him to practice this week," Harbaugh said. "The reason is he's been doing a great job with his rehab. I've seen him do some things in there that I've never seen him do before from an athletic standpoint as far as being healthy with his hips. He's in great shape.

"People look at a 335-pound man and say, 'How can he be in great shape?' Well, he is. His body fat is down to around 20 percent, which is pretty darn good for a big man. He's ready to go. He's champing at the bit."

Cody once weighed 400 pounds in junior college. He acknowledged his weight could have been a factor in the stress on his hips.

"I feel good," Cody recently told The Baltimore Sun. "I feel quick. It's been tough sitting there watching the game. You want to be out there to help your teammates and go through the battle with them and not just be one of the guys watching the game."

Cody first had surgery on his left hip a year ago, and he also had a procedure on his elbow. This year, it was his right hip, with the labrum repaired each time.

"When I got the left hip done, there were problems in the right hip already," said Cody, a 2010 second-round draft pick from Alabama. "It wasn't severe enough to have surgery. As the season went on and rehab and everything, I was kind of compensating and putting a lot of stress on that side. It progressed as the damage went on."

Cody was signed to a one-year, $730,000 contract in March that includes no guaranteed money. He had 15 tackles in 12 games last season with one start. In four NFL seasons, the former consensus All-American has 87 career tackles and two pass deflections with no sacks or forced fumbles.

"It's been a long time," Cody said. "I'm itching to get back out there. I want to get healthy and stay healthy."

awilson@baltsun.com

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