The Ravens are off today, a much-needed break for some, and an opportunity for the team’s injured players to get one more day of treatment before attempting to return to the practice field. The team has had a ton of injuries, some nagging ones and a couple of possible season-ending ones. Below is a recap of the players who have been missing from recent practices and speculation on their readiness for Thursday night’s preseason opener against the New Orleans Saints at M&T Bank Stadium.
Kamar Aiken, WR: Aiken was held out of practice on Saturday for general fatigue. The team’s current No.2 receiver, Aiken has had a busy and effective training camp and should be ready to play Thursday.
Terrence Brooks, S: There have been no real updates on the second-year safety who is on the physically unable to perform list after tearing up his knee in a game last December. Brooks has run around a bit and been on the field to observe practices. He should be available to play at some point this season, though it remains unclear if he’ll be ready in a month for the regular-season opener.
Marlon Brown, WR: The good news is that Brown, who hasn’t practiced since late last week, is no longer experiencing issues with his back. The bad news is that he’s now dealing with a sore hamstring. Ravens head coach John Harbaugh said that Brown is getting “closer and closer” to a return. However, unless he practices Monday, it’s unlikely that he’ll face the Saints.
Matt Elam. S: The 2013 first-round pick had surgery a couple of days ago to repair a torn biceps. The Ravens will make a decision later in camp whether to put Elam on season-ending injured reserve or injured reserve with a designation to return. Either way, he’ll be sidelined for a while.
Chris Greenwood, CB: After missing several days of workouts because of a hamstring injury, Greenwood returned to the field yesterday, though he didn’t do a whole lot. His activity should increase in Monday and Tuesday’s practices assuming his hamstring responds. Without a setback, Greenwood should be available to play a few snaps Thursday.
Kendrick Lewis, S: The starting safety hurt his right leg in yesterday’s practice while going after a loose ball. Lewis yelled and slammed his helmet a couple of times as he appeared to be in significant pain. However, he stayed on the sideline for the rest of the practice rather than heading in to get treatment, perhaps a sign that the injury wasn’t significant.
Robert Myers, OG: Myers, a rookie fifth-round pick, suffered a concussion in last Thursday’s practice. He’ll have to pass various tests before his return to the field and the Ravens have vowed to take it slow with him.
Kelechi Osemele, OG: Osemele had his foot/ankle stepped up in last Wednesday’s practice. He finished the workout, but he hasn’t been able to make it through a full practice since. He took part in the individual drills yesterday, but he didn’t feel good enough to continue through the team portion of practice. His absence from practice is more precautionary than anything and there’s still a decent chance that the starting left guard is in the lineup Thursday.
Breshad Perriman, WR: Everybody is anxiously anticipating the first-round draft pick’s return from a sprained knee. He’s missed eight consecutive practices and while Harbaugh said yesterday that Perriman is getting closer, it might be a bit optimistic to expect him back at practice Monday. Harbaugh declined to rule Perriman out for Thursday’s game, but it seems extremely unlikely that the rookie will be ready. He’s still yet to participate in a full-contact practice after all.
Dennis Pitta, TE: Nothing has changed for Pitta, who remains on the physically unable to perform list. Pitta comes out for the practices in shorts and a T-shirt and takes part in position meetings. However, he still hasn’t been cleared to play and it remains a possibility that fracturing and dislocating his hip in back-to-back years will ultimately force the tight end into early retirement. Pitta regularly meets with doctors, but the Ravens have said on numerous occasions that it’s too early to tell if he’ll be able to play in 2015 and beyond.
Steve Smith Sr., WR: The veteran wasn’t on the field for the past two practices, but Smith isn’t dealing with an injury. He’s back home in Charlotte, N.C., taking care of a family matter. He’s expected to return in time for Monday’s practice and play in Thursday’s game.
Zach Thompson, OLB: Thompson has been sidelined since getting banged up during the Ravens’ stadium practice last Sunday. He consulted with team doctors before heading to the locker room with an undisclosed injury.
DeAngelo Tyson, DE: It’s unclear why Tyson has not been on the field for the past two Ravens’ practices. Harbaugh said that he doesn’t believe Tyson sustained an injury. “Something must have cropped up,” Harbaugh said. Without knowing the cause of Tyson’s absence, it’s unfair to speculate whether the third-year rotational defensive lineman will be active for the preseason opener.
Brent Urban, DE: A year after sustaining a season-ending knee injury in training camp, Urban suffered a torn biceps muscle. He will have surgery in the coming days and could be lost for the season. Harbaugh said that Urban faces a 12-to-14 week rehab, so there’s a chance that he could return late in the regular season. However, the Ravens would have to use their injured reserve-designation to return slot on him.
John Urschel, OG: It was a scary moment in last Thursday’s practice as Urschel, the Ravens’ top reserve interior lineman, collapsed to the ground on a running play. He stayed on the ground for a couple of minutes as teammates kneeled around him and a cart arrived on the field. Urschel wound up walking straight to the training room under his own power. He was diagnosed with a concussion and Harbaugh said that the team would take it slow with the second-year lineman.
Tray Walker, CB: Walker has missed nearly a week now with a sore hamstring, and the Ravens are taking it slow with the rookie fourth-round pick. Unless he’s full go in Monday’s practice – and that appears unlikely – Walker will probably miss the preseason opener.
Maxx Williams, TE: The rookie second-round pick left last Thursday’s practice early after he was poked in the eye. He was sidelined for Friday’s workout and he tried to go yesterday, but only was able to do the individual drills before heading back to the locker room. It’s impossible to predict how long an eye injury will linger, so Williams’ status for Thursday is unclear.