QB Joe Flacco Is Making Progress, But Participation Limited
Quarterback Joe Flacco was a limited participant in Friday’s practice and is doubtful for Sunday’s game against the Atlanta Falcons.
Head Coach John Harbaugh was encouraged by having Flacco on the field back-to-back days. Flacco returned to practice Thursday for the first time since suffering his right hip injury Nov. 4.
“It’s coming along well,” Harbaugh said of Flacco’s recovery. “We talked about kind of anticipating some progress this week and he made quite a bit of progress. … I thought he looked good yesterday, looked a lot better today. The biggest thing was he didn’t have a setback from yesterday.”
Harbaugh has not officially announced a starter for Sunday’s road game against the Atlanta Falcons, but Lamar Jackson has started since Flacco’s injury and the Ravens (6-5) haswon both games. Harbaugh left open the possibility that Flacco would play or be activated Sunday.
“I’d say, yes, he’s an option,” Harbaugh said. “There’s still doctors involved at this point.”
Once Flacco is healthy, Harbaugh is not saying which quarterback will start moving forward.
“I was thinking about the best way to describe it, because it’s not simple,” Harbaugh said. “There’s a formula involved here. The two biggest factors are time and circumstances. Those are things we just don’t know. Time in terms of the medical aspect of it. Circumstances in terms of our team and where we’re at, how guys are playing including the players involved. To me, it’s like any other position that way, it’s just it’s more attention because it’s the quarterback. We’ll see where we’re at as we go.”
S Tony Jefferson Ruled Out for Sunday
Starting safety Tony Jefferson will miss his first game of the season after injuring his ankle against the Oakland Raiders. Jefferson is second on the team in tackles with 61, only trailing insidelinebacker C.J. Mosley (72).
Chuck Clark, who took over for Jefferson after his second-quarter injury, is expected to make his first start replacing Jefferson. Clark played 27 snaps against the Raiders in his most extended action of the season.
RBs Gus Edwards and Alex Collins Are Questionable
Three Ravens who are questionable were full participants Friday: running back Gus Edwards (ankle), running back Alex Collins (foot), and outside linebacker Tim Williams (illness). Edwards has topped 100 yards in back-to-back games, but the undrafted rookie was too banged up to practice Wednesday.
Slot cornerback Tavon Young (ankle) and linebacker/defensive back Anthony Levine Sr. (ankle) are questionable after being limited participants Friday. Young was unable to play against the Raiders, but Brandon Carr, Anthony Averett, and Cyrus Jones all saw snaps at slot cornerback.
OL James Hurst Isn’t Ready Yet, But Maybe Next Week
James Hurst (back) practiced this week and is questionable, but Harbaugh indicated Hurst would miss his sixth straight game. Harbaugh said Hurst was not game ready but had made significant strides this week.
Hurst started the first six games at right tackle, and Orlando Brown Jr. has played well in Hurst’s absence. However, Hurst can play both guard and tackle, making him a valuable member of the offensive line as either a starter or backup.
“James has looked good,” Harbaugh said. “He will not be ready to play in the game. He just needs more time on task in terms of practice and getting back in the weight room. Next week would be a legitimate chance for him. We’ll keep our fingers crossed for that. It’s not a forgone conclusion by any stretch, but he made a big jump this week. He’s back in the mix. That’s good news for us.”
Kenneth Dixon Could Make Return From IR
Running back Kenneth Dixon, who has not played since suffering a knee injury Week 1 against the Buffalo Bills, could be activated off injured reserve for Sunday’s game. If Dixon is activated, a roster decision will have to be made.
“He’s real close,” Harbaugh said. “I think he’s also an option for Sunday. We’ll see if he’s out there or not. We’d have to make the roster work as well.”
The Ravens already have four running backs on the active roster – Edwards, Collins, Javorius Allen and Tim Montgomery. All of them dressed against the Raiders and Harbaugh indicated he could not envision a scenario where he would dress five running backs.
Star Inside Linebacker Deion Jones Returns for Falcons
The Falcons had no one listed on Friday’s injury report, highly unusual for this late in the season.
It also means inside linebacker Deion Jones, a 2017 Pro Bowler, is expected to play his first game since suffering a foot injury Week 1. The Falcons (4-7) have sorely missed Jones, who is regarded as one of the NFL’s best inside linebackers. It will be a big boost to their No. 28-ranked defense, which has allowed 123.7 rushing yards per game this season in Jones' absence.