Seven weeks after safety Dawan Landry was knocked out – literally – from a game with a spinal cord concussion, the Ravens are looking into whether he'll play again this year.
Landry was officially ruled out of Sunday's matchup with the Houston Texans and visited a doctor Tuesday.
If it is determined that the starter would miss a significant amount of time moving forward, he could end up becoming the 15th member of the Ravens' Injured Reserve list.
"I would say Dawan is close to that point right now," said head coach John Harbaugh. "We're still looking at those results. We should know something by the end of the week one way or the other."
It was originally thought that Landry would have a speedy, but cautious, recovery from the blow he took to the helmet from Cleveland Browns running back Jamal Lewis in Week 3, but further tests showed that the former fifth-round draft pick needed more time.
The issue for the Ravens is how long the team can hold Landry's roster spot while he returns to full health.
"It does to the extent of, 'Are they going to be out for another three or four weeks?'" Harbaugh explained. "If a guy is ready to come back in the near future, then you feel like you're willing to wait because you've got a good football player.
"But at some point in time you've got to cut your losses and do something with the roster – bring a player in who can help you right now."
Previous to the injury, Landry had not missed a game since he became a rookie starter in 2006.
In Landry's place, Jim Leonhard has been solid. The free-agent addition is sixth on the team with 38 tackles, adding one sack and two passes defensed.
Baltimore also signed safety Daren Stone, a 6-foot-3, 215-pounder that was a sixth-round draft pick of the Atlanta Falcons in 2007. Stone totaled eight special teams stops in his only season with Atlanta. He was briefly signed by the Dallas Cowboys this year.
Several Ravens have been buzzing about Barack Obama's election as the first black President of the United States.
"I thought it was amazing. I'm young. I'm 26, so the only thing in history [I've witnessed] that really affected U.S. history was 9/11, that I got to live through," said linebacker Terrell Suggs. "This was something where I was just amazed. I couldn't believe I was watching what was happening."
Wideout Derrick Mason thought of his children when Obama took the stage with his two daughters in the victory celebration.
"To see his children walk out with him that was the biggest thing because you have two African-American girls walking out and they can always say, 'My daddy was president,'" Mason stated.
"I look at my daughter and my son and say, 'You know what? You could be president one day, regardless of what the situation is.'"
But, Mason also understands that the election goes far beyond race.
"It's a good day, but it doesn't stop here," he continued. "He has a lot of work ahead of him, and he understands that."
Harbaugh, on the other hand, had more than enough to do Tuesday during the long results broadcast – namely the Texans. Still, the coach brought it up during a team meeting Wednesday.
"[I] didn't watch it. I wish I could say that I did," Harbaugh said. "But we talked about it, actually, as a football team, and no matter your political affiliation or who you voted for, I think all the guys in the room, coaches and players, we felt a sense of pride for what's been accomplished and where the country is because of what happened."
More on Injuries
Cornerback Chris McAlister did not participate in practice Wednesday, as he was visiting a specialist in Canada for another opinion on his injured knee. In his Monday press conference, Harbaugh declared McAlister out for this weekend.
Meanwhile, Houston suffered a huge loss when leading tackler Zac Diles snapped his left tibia in practice yesterday. He will miss the rest of the season.
Baltimore is not relying on notes from its Houston preparation from Week 2, when Hurricane Ike blew through the city and postponed the Ravens' trip south. But, Harbaugh admitted that some of that game plan could still be used. "We were kind of amazed at how much of it still applied," he said. "We were able to use a lot of stuff that we practiced in Week 2, and a lot of the stuff we couldn't use. But we did carry over a lot of the game plan." … Rookie quarterback Joe Flacco is rooting his fellow first-round passer this year, as Matt Ryan has the Atlanta Falcons holding steady at 5-3. Ryan has thrown for 1,661 yards, nine touchdowns and seven interceptions. "He's having a great year," Flacco said. "They're having a great year. They turned it around. They're pretty similar to us [with a] new coaching staff. They have some new players and they've gone out there and done a good job." … The Ravens are 2-0 all-time against the Texans, the most-recent win coming in 2005 in a 16-15 game at M&T Bank Stadium.