OWINGS MILLS, Md. — The optimism created with the return to the practice field of Marshal Yanda Friday quickly dissipated when the Ravens listed the Pro Bowl guard as doubtful for this weekend’s clash with the Cincinnati Bengals.
After working on a limited basis in the week’s final practice, Yanda told reporters he was feeling better, but the lineman wasn’t ready to disclose his chances of suiting up against the Bengals. If Yanda is unable to go, either veteran Andre Gurode or rookie Jah Reid would start at the right guard position.
“We’ve got 48 hours yet, but we’ll see what happens,” Yanda said. “I felt OK out there today, so we’ll see what happens come Sunday. Still don’t know yet.”
Yanda took a knee to the ribcage during last week’s win over Cleveland and was the victim of a leg whip a few plays later, causing a thigh contusion.
“The ribs are tough because they obviously hurt like hell on Sunday, and I really couldn’t breathe well,” Yanda said. “My breathing’s getting better, but I still feel them. I’m still dealing with them right now, so we’ll see.”
The most surprising news from Friday was the return of wide receiver Anquan Boldin to the practice field only eight days after undergoing surgery on a partially-torn meniscus in his knee. The 31-year-old worked on a limited basis on Friday and was upgraded to “doubtful” on the injury report, though he is still not expected to play.
Linebacker Dannell Ellerbe is doubtful as he continues to deal with concussion-like symptoms.
“I would say the guys are progressing,” said coach John Harbaugh, who did not disclose any new information on injuries. “Obviously, we had some guys get out here and do a little bit of work. Anquan was out here earlier. Marshal got out here early and did some things. We’ll have to see how that progresses. These guys had some pretty serious things. We’ll just have to see.”
Cornerback Cary Williams, defensive end Cory Redding, and kicker Billy Cundiff are all questionable to play against the Bengals after practicing on a limited basis all week. Williams had yet to be cleared for contact as of early Friday afternoon; however, the Ravens remain optimistic that he will be available in a secondary that will try to slow rookie phenom A.J. Green.
“Cary’s actually done very well,” Harbaugh said. “Cary’s been limited participation. He looks pretty good right now. He has not been cleared as of yet. It is a concussion.”
The Ravens have not made a decision regarding who will handle kicking duties on Sunday. Cundiff practiced on a limited basis all week long and says he is feeling much better than any other time he’s tried to come back to play over the last three weeks. However, Baltimore could elect to go with Shayne Graham an extra week to ensure Cundiff’s calf is as close to 100 percent as possible for the postseason.
Graham was successful on both field goal attempts he had against Cleveland on Christmas Eve.
“I guess at this point it’s all up to whether how he feels and what their decision is,” Graham said. “I’m not really sure exactly where. I plan on being ready if asked. I’m sure he wants to get back in. I’m sure they’ll figure it out. It’s not in my control anymore, so if I do get to play, I look forward to it. If he plays, I hope he’s rested enough. I hope he does well. You guys literally know as much as I do.”
DOUBTFUL: WR Anquan Boldin (knee), LB Dannell Ellerbe (head), G Marshal Yanda (chest)
QUESTIONABLE: K Billy Cundiff (left calf), DE Cory Redding (ankle), CB Cary Williams (head)
DOUBTFUL: S Taylor Mays (hamstring), LB Dontay Moch (illness)
QUESTIONABLE: DE Carlos Dunlap (hamstring)
PROBABLE: T Anthony Collins (non-injury related), S Chris Crocker (knee), CB Brandon Ghee (toe), WR AJ Green (shoulder), DE Frostee Rucker (neck), T Andrew Whitworth (knee)