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Post-Practice Transcripts: September 1st

Head Coach John Harbaugh

Opening statement: "We ran a '10-10-10' [practice], as we call it. We were sharp and crisp, and guys were excited to be out there practicing."

On what a 10-10-10 is:"Ten offense, 10 defense, 10 offense, 10 defense, 10 offense, 10 defense, and a little special teams. But, simple. We're simple in football."

On if the Ravens have added a new quarterback:"No."

On if the Ravens are thinking about adding a new quarterback:"We're looking at doing that. Our situation, I think we probably have to. We need a backup quarterback for the game, so we're looking at other guys."

On an update on QB Kyle Boller's condition: "It's a deal where we've got to wait a certain amount of time to see exactly what it is. There's some medicine* *in there that's got to take affect, and we'll know, probably by Friday, what we have there."

On QB Troy Smith's health:"Troy's around. He was in the building today. He looks a little thinner, but he's got a smile on his face. He's hugging everybody; we have an issue with that (laughter). Everybody's like, 'Whoa, not so close.' But he's happy to be back."

On if Smith practiced today:"No, he won't be practicing for a while. He's on antibiotics and different things. He's going to be out until he gets his strength back and that infection clears up."

On if he would rule out Boller and Smith for Sunday's game against Cincinnati:"Pretty close. We're not ready to do that yet, but I would say we're pretty close to ruling those guys out."

On if QB Joe Flacco is the best-case scenario for a starter:"I think we're at the point now where we can say it. I appreciate you guys not coming straight out and asking me. But, Joe is going to be the starter on Sunday. He's taken the reps as a starter. It wouldn't be realistic to have one of those two guys [Boller or Smith] as a starter for sure. If they can back up, I think that would be an upset."

On how keeping Smith around despite him not being able to play affects the roster:"What we have to do is we have to get another quarterback in – also [similar to] Kyle's situation. So, we're carrying three quarterbacks now; we may have to carry a fourth. It means we'll have to let somebody else go, temporarily or permanently. And that would be unfortunate."

On if they do bring a new quarterback in, could that be more permanent than temporary:"It's a possibility. I mean, you could figure out the scenario where that would be the case. That would definitely be a possibility."

On Flacco's reaction when he found out he would start against Cincinnati:"He's calm. He doesn't react much. He probably saw it coming. It's not something that was too hard to figure out. He was in here watching tape all weekend, just hanging around and looking for someone to talk to, basically. He's excited in his own 'Joe' way. He's excited."

On if he would have preferred for Flacco to learn from the sidelines by observing another quarterback play:"To me, it doesn't really matter. What difference does it make? Joe's our guy, and we think he can win for us. He had a heck of a practice, and we're excited to go out there and play with him."

On if Flacco could be the long-term starter despite what happens with the other quarterbacks:"Everybody gets an opportunity, and you take it and you run with it. You can definitely envision a scenario where it could be Joe's job throughout the year. You can envision a scenario where it's Kyle's job again. You can envision that it's Troy's job, or even the new quarterback, whoever he is. I mean, there are a lot of things that can happen in football, so we're really not predicting anything. No reason to go there. We know Sunday it's going to be Joe, and let's go try and win a football game."

On if the Ravens have any interest in QB Chris Simms:"Yeah, there's interest. We worked out three guys today. I don't know if I'm at liberty to say… Am I? It doesn't matter, right? We had Chris Simms in, [Todd] Bouman from Jacksonville and [Joey] Harrington. Those are the three guys, and we had three receivers in. Are you interested in knowing who those guys are? Sorry."

On if he ever imagined the quarterback situation would play out this way:"Providence, I guess. You could never write this. In a movie script, if one of you guys wrote your movie script, no one would believe it, right? So probably not."

On if he is enthused by how Flacco has improved from series to series:"The thing that's kind of exciting about it is just that fact. You couldn't envision this scenario; it wasn't what we planned. We didn't plan on him taking this many reps, or really any one quarterback taking this many reps throughout the preseason, probably. But he's certainly benefited from it. And you can see the improvement from the first game to the fourth game."

On CB Chris McAlister (knee) being ready to play on Sunday:"All you can go by is what you see. And he practiced today and did a nice job, so that's where we're at."

On his concern of the depth at cornerback:"Well, we've got the two guys [Fabian Washington and Derrick Martin] who are out for this game, so that's a concern. But we've got Anwar [Phillips] on the roster, and he did a really nice job at camp, so he's capable of playing for us, along with the other guys."

On the status of S Ed Reed:"I think it's day-by-day with that, realistically. It's one of those deals where, and he said it, it's day-by-day. He's going to need to practice at some point in time to be ready to play. And when he can practice and prepare properly, then he'll be ready to play. I know he's working hard to get to that point."

On the progress of RB Willis McGahee (knee), and if he will play on Sunday:"He practiced today also. I wouldn't say he was 100 percent, just watching him run around out there. But he was out there, so we'll have to see how he progresses this week. He wants to be out there, I know that."

On his option for a backup running back if McGahee is not able to start:"You saw it in the preseason. It was Le'Ron McClain. He's our backup halfback at this point, and he did a nice job."

QB Joe Flacco

On being named starter for Week 1:"There'll be a bunch of feelings. It's the first regular-season game, and it's the first real action. Having said that, we've had a couple preseason games now. I've gotten to go out there, do that and work with the guys. We're a group now. We're going to go out there as an offense and try to prove that we're a good offense. That starts with Cincinnati."

On hoping he can hang on to the starting job:"Oh yeah. That's my plan, to hold on to it as long as I can. In my eyes, it's going to be a lot of years. That's my plan, and it's up to me to go out there and do that."

On if he's surprised he'll be starting the season opener as a rookie: "It's faster than I expected, but this is what I wanted all along. Things happen funny. I've gotten my opportunity. It's up to me to go out there and play, and it's up to our offense. It's all about our offense now. We're in the regular season, and all these games count. We're a unit. We want to go out there and prove we're a good offense. That's what we're going to do this week, starting with Cincinnati."

On his chances of keeping the starting job:"My thinking is, go out there and win some games. That's the first thing I'm thinking about, and that's the only thing I'm thinking about. Go out there and win some games, and that's going to take the offensive line continuing to do what they've been doing all preseason. It's going to take the receivers continuing what they've been doing and getting better each week. And it's going to take the backs going in there and running the ball hard. We're going to go in there and do the best we can."

On preparing to start:"There are a lot of things to prepare for. That's the excitement of it, coming in here and actually getting ready for a week and having it be the first full week getting ready for a team and preparing for a team. It's a lot of fun, and it's going to be exciting to see what the week's about."

On putting in film work over the weekend:"I don't know how many guys stayed here this weekend, but I was definitely here this weekend just getting ready for the game."

QB Troy Smith

On dealing with his illness:"I'm feeling a little better, but the process hasn't been easy because you work so hard to achieve certain things, and then something comes that you don't have any control over. You've just got to battle through it."

On the how the illness developed:"[It was] kind of a sudden thing. The doctors started off thinking that it was just the flu and having a fever, but it turned into way more than what even the doctors thought. But the doctors did an incredible job with getting me back on my feet now. We're just staying the course with the antibiotics and different little things that we're going through."

On how he feels right now:"Physically, I'm all right. There are still a couple spells and a couple bouts where I've got to get through it with my breathing and things like that. But I'm getting through it."

On the bad timing of his illness:"I won't be able to take you through what I've been through because it's more than just a minute-and-a-half synopsis of what's going on. This is literally my [entire] body. I can't do that for you, but my team has done nothing but give me support. Everybody has been behind me 100 percent. That shows you what a team is really about."

On his excitement at being back with the team and what he's missed:"The very, very small things you kind of take for granted, like just being around the guys and laughing and joking. From a hospital bed, you can't hear that. Just being back, it means everything. It means everything in the world."

On his mindset over the past several days:"To tell you the truth, you have to think as if the glass is always half full. If I was in a situation where I would just want to point the finger, who would I point it at? It would have to come back towards me. God works in mysterious ways, and He's still incredible. I still believe in him 110 percent, and there's no doubt because He's pulled me through so far. There's nothing that He'll put in front of me that I can't handle."

On whether he risks any recurrence of getting sick:"I don't think there's a person walking around that can say they're unable to [come down with] illness. To me, that's not a smart question because anybody can get sick at any time."

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