OWINGS MILLS, Md. — The Baltimore Ravens (8-3) returned to practice Thursday at 1 Winning Drive, continuing preparations for Sunday’s AFC North showdown with the Pittsburgh Steelers (8-3) at M&T Bank Stadium.
CB Fabian Washington has been a fixture during Special Teams practice this week. Special Teams Coordinator Jerry Rosburg said Washington has been playing full safety in kick coverage and holdup corner on punt return.
After being deactivated for the team’s Week 12 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Washington hopes Special Teams could be his ticket back to the active roster.
“I just want to get on the field by any means necessary” said the cornerback. “If I’ve gotta play Special Teams, I’ll play Special Teams.”
Washington said he hadn’t played Special Teams since his rookie year (2005 with the Oakland Raiders). He said it hasn’t been hard to get readjusted to playing Special Teams.
“Special Teams-to me-is just ‘want to.’ There’s guys out there that just fly around. That’s what Special Teams is.”
Washington has maintained a positive attitude towards playing Special Teams after beginning the season as a starting corner.
“I’m having a blast. The season didn’t quite go how I wanted it to go for myself but as a team we’re 8-3 and we’re winning. You can’t be too down about winning. This is my first time (being) 8-3. I’m trying to win a Super Bowl, whatever it takes to get to Dallas.”
PRACTICE REPORT: FB Le’Ron McClain (ankle) missed practice for a second consecutive day, further fueling speculation he will miss Sunday’s contest. McClain injured his ankle early in the second half of the Ravens’ win over the Bucs.
If McClain is unavailable Sunday, newly signed FB Jason McKie will be expected to play in his place. Offensive Coordinator Cam Cameron thinks McKie will be ready to go.
“(General Manager Ozzie Newsome) went out there and found a veteran guy who picks things up quickly. (McKie) has the basic concepts down of what we do in our regular package.”
Cameron said he has no concerns about McKie’s ability to function in the Ravens’ offense.
“The minute you start worrying about it, you might as well not play the guy.”
McKie said the Ravens use “different terminology”, but he has been able to pick up the offense with the help of RB Coach Wilbert Montgomery.
All other injured Ravens were on the practice field Thursday. S Dawan Landry (limited participant-head), OL Chris Chester (full participant-infection), TE Ed Dickson (full-thigh) and OT Michael Oher (full-knee) took part in drills. WR Derrick Mason (illness) missed practice however.
Three Steelers missed practice Thursday. CB Keenan Lewis (illness), DE Aaron Smith (triceps) and TE Matt Spaeth (concussion) did not participate. QB Ben Roethlisberger (foot) was a limited participant. OT Flozell Adams (back), DE Nick Eason (knee), DE Brett Keisel (calf), CB Bryant McFadden (hamstring) and S Troy Polamalu (ankle) were full participants.
NOTES: Hear from Cameron, Rosburg, Defensive Coordinator Greg Mattison, Washington and McKie in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net……DT Arthur Jones is scheduled to join Drew Forrester Friday morning at 7:15 on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST……The Ravens have kept a left footed punter in the building this week as they prepare to face the Steelers’ Daniel Sepulveda……The Ravens will hold their final open practice of the week Friday, Head Coach John Harbaugh is scheduled to meet with the media following Friday’s practice