Ravens safety Tony Jefferson practiced for a second straight day Friday, and coach John Harbaugh said that if it were up to him, Jefferson would play Sunday against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
“I thought he did well,” Harbaugh said. “We’ll have to see what the trainers say, but I thought he did well.”
Jefferson has missed the past two games because of a left ankle sprain, but has moved noticeably better this week.
Cornerback Marlon Humphrey also practiced Friday after missing the previous two days because of a lingering groin injury, which limited him to 44 snaps Sunday against the Kansas City Chiefs. Humphrey practiced just once last week, as well.
“He’s just trying to get this strong and make sure it’s right,” Harbaugh said. “We’ll have to watch the tape and talk to [head athletic trainer] Ron [Medlin] and Marlon, of course, to see how he looked and how he felt.”
Jefferson and Humphrey were listed as questionable on the team’s injury report Friday. The Ravens could use both against a deep Buccaneers receiving corps, though Tampa Bay has ruled out its top deep threat, DeSean Jackson, because of a thumb injury.
Guard Alex Lewis, who missed Sunday's game and practice Thursday and Friday with a shoulder injury, is doubtful.
Newly demoted quarterback Joe Flacco (right hip), whom Harbaugh said he expects to be part of Sunday's game plan, is questionable despite fully practicing throughout the week. Linebacker-defensive back Anthony Levine Sr. (ankle), outside linebacker Tim Williams (ankle) and cornerback Tavon Young (groin) also were full participants Friday and are questionable.
In addition to Jackson, Buccaneers starting safety Justin Evans will miss Sunday's game in Baltimore. Defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul, middle linebacker Adarius Taylor, cornerback Carlton Davis and right guard Demar Dotson, all starters, are questionable.
A. Lewis trying to avoid surgery
Lewis said the neck stinger he suffered two months ago in a Week 6 win over the Tennessee Titans has contributed to the left shoulder injury that sidelined him Sunday in Kansas City.
Lewis said Wednesday that the week off helped reduce the swelling and improved his shoulder’s strength and range of motion, but he acknowledged he might have to eventually undergo surgery for a full recovery.
“That’s going to be something that we’re going to have to decide at the end of the season,” he said. “If it keeps limiting me from working out and performing, then certainly surgery is an option. But if we can strengthen it and build around it, we should be all right.”
Clark’s ‘winning football’
In his second career start Sunday, safety Chuck Clark finally got his wish when he intercepted an errant throw by Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes in the third quarter.
Not only was it the Ravens’ first interception since Week 5, but it was also the first pick of Clark’s career.
“You always dream of getting an interception,” the 2017 sixth-round draft pick said Wednesday. “You don’t know how you’re going to get it, but just getting it, you just want to build from there. But especially against a good offense like that, and at that point in the game, it was a critical time.”
In two starts for the injured Jefferson, Clark has nine tackles and the one interception. Harbaugh said Clark has fit in well with the defense.
“Chuck played well — very solid, very good football,” he said. “Yes, I think he played well. He played winning football.”
Clark, however, said he could have done more to help the team come away with a win.
“You critique yourself and just know what you can do,” he said. “I feel like I’ve played solid, but there’s always things you can get better on. When you go back and watch the film and you see what you did, you always see things you could’ve done better.”
» Harbaugh said he had “no complaints at all” about the play of first-round pick and rookie tight end Hayden Hurst, who has not been targeted on a pass the past two weeks.
“Just keep playing,” he said. “There are only so many reps. We have four guys in there playing [tight end], and they’re all playing very well. Hayden is playing well, too, and will get a couple balls thrown his way and make a couple plays, and he’s done it in practice. He’s blocked well when he’s been in there and done that.”
» Harbaugh said with the emergence of running backs Kenneth Dixon and Ty Montgomery, it's “pretty clear” that the team needs to continue to rotate players at the position and not rely largely on Gus Edwards.
“This is the offense that we’re in, and we like this offense that we’re in. … We’re very excited about it,” Harbaugh said. “We need running backs doing it, we need them to be fresh, and they need to be rolling. It’s going to always be that [way] with this offense.”