Ravens wide receiver Willie Snead IV returned to practice as a limited participant Thursday, his first appearance since suffering an ankle injury in a Week 16 win over the New York Giants.
Snead, a reliable run blocker and slot receiver (432 receiving yards) this season, could be available for Sunday’s wild-card-round game against the Tennessee Titans. Coach John Harbaugh said Monday that he was “really hopeful” Snead would be back, but that it’s “not a given.”
Cornerback Marlon Humphrey, who missed practice Wednesday with a shoulder injury, also returned to practice, as did defensive end Calais Campbell, who usually sits out the first day of practice each week. Along with Humphrey, starting center Patrick Mekari (back), starting defensive end Yannick Ngakoue (thigh) and cornerback Jimmy Smith (ribs/shoulder) were limited Thursday.
D.J. Fluker, who has started the past three games at right tackle, missed his second straight day with a knee injury. Rookie Tyre Phillips, who started the season at right guard but has shared time in recent weeks with Fluker, would likely take his place if Fluker’s injury is too limiting. Phillips played over 50% of the snaps in Sunday’s win over the Cincinnati Bengals.
Running back Mark Ingram II and defensive tackle Brandon Williams (noninjury-related) also did practice Thursday.
In Tennessee, the Titans were missing Pro Bowl wide receiver A.J. Brown (knee/hand), who was only limited in practice Wednesday. Starting offensive linemen Rodger Saffold (ankle) and Dennis Kelly (knee) missed their second straight day, though Saffold on Wednesday vowed to play this weekend. Cornerback Adoree’ Jackson (knee) sat out practice after limited participation Wednesday.
Running backs Derrick Henry (noninjury-related) and Darrynton Evans (shoulder) were limited.
Titans kicker Stephen Gostkowski, menawhile, was activated off the reserve/COVID-19 list Thursday and will be available for Sunday’s game. Coach Mike Vrabel told local reporters that he would be evaluated in workouts to determine whether he’s ready to kick.
Gostkowski is 18-for-26 on field-goal attempts and 46-for-48 on extra-point attempts this season. Sam Sloman made both of his field goals Sunday against the Houston Texans, including the game-winner.
- Cornerback Marcus Peters said he’s appealed the NFL’s $12,500 fine for unsportsmanlike conduct after appearing to spit at Jarvis Landry as the Cleveland Browns wide receiver walked away in their Week 14 game. “If we’re going to roll with something like that, I am who I am, and I stand by what I said,” said Peters, who denied intentionally spitting at Landry.
- Asked about the Ravens’ loss to the Titans in the playoffs last season, in which they finished with 530 yards but just 12 points, offensive coordinator Greg Roman said the “plan was good, except for what? We didn’t score points to back up all the yards. If we had converted some of those long drives into touchdowns, it would have been a whole different story.”
- Defensive coordinator Don “Wink” Martindale called stopping Titans running back Derrick Henry, the NFL’s leading rusher, “the greatest challenge every play” and “the best running back in football.” Added Martindale: “We know it. He knows it. We’re just getting ready to go for the challenge ahead on Sunday.”
- Special teams coordinator Chris Horton said the Ravens wanted to give wide receiver Chris Moore the opportunity to return kicks Sunday against Cincinnati, but that regular starter Devin Duvernay “is still our guy.”